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Surgical Specimens

Surgical pathology involves the examination of surgical specimens and biopsies. CPA offers analysis of these specimens for cancer and other clinical conditions. Special care should be taken to ensure proper labeling and fixation of the tissue specimen. Please contact CPA Lab for specimen collection instructions.

A surgical request form must accompany the specimen and include the following information:

  • Patient's name, chart or medical records number, social security number and date of birth.
  • Date specimen was taken, name of physician requesting examination, and any physicians requiring an additional copy of the report.
  • Patient's address and insurance information. The insurance name and address the claimshould be submitted to must be filled out on the requisition. It is essential that the ID number, group number, and name of responsible party if different from the patient be given. It is preferable to make a copy of the patient's insurance card. 
  • The source of the specimen, site of excision, and clinical history or impression must be noted. If known, previous biopsy information should be included.
  • Any special instructions such as "Rush" or "Phone" should be included.
  • The ICD-9 code must be included to reflect the reason the patient is being seen by the physician.
    The specimen and requisition should be put in a double walled plastic CPA bag for courier pickup. The specimen should be placed in the front zipper portion with the paperwork placed in the back outside pocket. The back copy of the requisition may be kept for client records. 

** Any specimens received unlabeled will be returned to the submitting clinician. CPA can not and will not process unlabeled surgical specimens. The name and specimen source noted on the specimen container must exactly match the patient name and specimen source submitted on the requisition or the specimen will be returned for clarification. Incomplete requisitions will be flagged and the physician's office called for complete information


Immunohistochemistry (IHC) is a method of analyzing and identifying cell types based on the binding of antibodies to specific components of the cell. Immunohistochemical staining is widely used in the diagnosis of abnormal cells, such as those found in cancerous tumors. IHC also is widely used in basic research to understand the distribution and localization of biomarkers and differentially expressed proteins in different parts of a biological tissue. Immunohistochemistry requires a sample of tissue from a biopsy. A blood sample or bone marrow may also be examined. CPA Lab offers the following IHC stains.


For additional specimen collection and preparation information, refer to the CPA Lab test menu.

The turnaround time for immunohistochemistry stains is 24 hours from receipt of block.

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