Synoptic Reporting in Tumor Pathology: Advantages of a Web-Based System

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The American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer (ACS-CoC) mandates that pathology reports at ACS-CoC–approved cancer programs include all scientifically validated data elements for each site and tumor specimen. The College of American Pathologists (CAP) has produced cancer checklists in static text formats to assist reporting. To be inclusive, the CAP checklists are pages long, requiring extensive text editing and multiple intermediate steps. We created a set of dynamic tumor-reporting templates, using Microsoft Active Server Page (ASP.NET), with drop-down list and data-compile features, and added a reminder function to indicate missing information. Users can access this system on the Internet, prepare the tumor report by selecting relevant data from drop-down lists with an embedded tumor staging scheme, and directly transfer the final report into a laboratory information system by using the copy-and-paste function. By minimizing extensive text editing and eliminating intermediate steps, this system can reduce reporting errors, improve work efficiency, and increase compliance.

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