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Chemical Pathology

Welcome to the Department of Chemical Pathology at the University of Pretoria

Chemical Pathology (also known as clinical biochemistry/clinical chemistry) is a discipline that interfaces with almost every clinical specialty, as up to 70% of clinical diagnosis requires the input of laboratory investigations. In this Department, we are passionate about, and dedicated to the discipline in particular and pathology in general and this is borne out in our enthusiasm to achieve excellence in teaching, clinical training, research and laboratory service. 

Chemical Pathology overlaps with the discipline of metabolic medicine and in some countries, the UK, for example, it is integrated with metabolic medicine to cover the domains of lipidology, metabolic bone disease, nutrition, inherited metabolic disorders and diabetes/endocrinology. This illustrates the vast overlap of chemical pathology with clinical medicine.  Thus, chemical pathologists are often called upon to manage these disorders either in the outpatient or inpatient setting. A substantial component of the discipline also overlaps with molecular genetics owing to the importance of molecular diagnosis in many inherited metabolic diseases.

In summary, Chemical Pathology occupies a central facilitative and enabling role in clinical medicine, without which proper patient management will not be possible. It is not just in secondary and tertiary health care where it is important, chemical pathology is also important for primary health care where screening tests are often used to determine disease patterns and occurrences and risk management in otherwise healthy individuals. 

Prospective students who are looking for more information are encouraged to contact the department here.

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