Quality of placental pathology reports

Pediatr Dev Pathol. Jan-Feb 2003;6(1):54-8. doi: 10.1007/s10024-001-0263-3. Epub 2002 Oct 10.


The surgical report is an important means of documenting normal and abnormal findings, and for distilling such information into a meaningful clinico-pathologic correlation. An audit of the quality of placental reports from four laboratories was performed using an arbitrary numerical scoring scheme that examined the gross, histologic, and commentary components of each report. The mean scores from the four laboratories were not statistically different from each other. Three (2%) and 48 (33%) of the 147 singleton placentas scored less than 50 and 75%, respectively, on this scoring scheme. None and 14 (41%) of the placentas from 34 multiple pregnancies scored less than 50 and 75%, respectively. Different aspects of the gross and histologic examination were reported variably by the laboratories. Commentaries on gross or histologic abnormalities, and in relation to clinical indications, were inconsistently reported. The standards of placental surgical reporting can be improved. The use of templates and checklists for reporting of placentas may be considered.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Australia
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Laboratories / standards
  • Management Audit*
  • Medical Records / standards*
  • Pathology Department, Hospital / standards
  • Pathology, Surgical / standards*
  • Placenta / pathology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Professional Competence
  • Quality Assurance, Health Care*