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Biopsy and Necropsy Services


The Department of Veterinary Pathology provides diagnostic surgical pathology service to the Veterinary Medical Center and we offer the same service to veterinary practitioners. Our staff includes seven ACVP board-certified veterinary anatomic pathologists and three histotechnologists. Our goal is to provide the highest quality diagnostic service to support the professional services of veterinarians and researchers.

What services do we provide?

We provide veterinary diagnostic histopathology service for biopsies submitted to us, including tumor diagnosis and dermatohistopathology.  Biopsy cases include all special stains and/or 2 immunohistochemical stains. The pathologists will determine the need for stains, but also can discuss staining needs with the submitting veterinarians. 

Our response goal is to FAX a written report to our clients within 24 hours of receiving a specimen. Specimens requiring decalcification or special stains will usually require additional time.

January 1, 2015 Pricing

Specimens from 1 organ or lesion $52.00
Specimens from 2-5 different organs or lesions $72.00
Specimens from 6 or more different organs or lesions $92.00
Complete Necropsy (including histopathologic exam of a complete dog, cat, or other companion animals). Call for pricing on large animal or other species.
Charges for microbiology cultures are not included in the necropsy fee.
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Additional charges may be applied for toxicology or referral testing.

How do you submit a biopsy to us?

Fill out the Department of Veterinary Pathology  Histopathology Submission form and submit it with the specimen. You can easily print this form from our Web site (PDF format).  If needed, you may download Acrobat Reader.

Place the biopsy specimen in a sealed, wide-mouth plastic bottle that contains 10-20 volumes of 10% neutral buffered formalin. Wrap medical tape or parafilm around the lid (Please do NOT use packing tape) and place the labeled bottle in a plastic bag with absorbent material (paper towel). Place inside a sturdy cardboard box and ship by a carrier of your choice to:

Iowa State University
Department of Veterinary Pathology
2703 Veterinary Medicine
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011

Specimens sent via mail or other carrier are required by law to be in a leak proof container, placed in a sealed bag with absorbent material suitable for absorbing a leak, and surrounded by a hard container (cardboard box) to protect it from impact.  The visible part of the mailing container must include the destination and return address.  The shipper has the responsibility to package these specimens in the manner described.

If you would like a kit that includes request forms, bottles, mailers, and return labels, please contact us at the telephone number or e-mail address listed below and we will gladly send these items to you.

Cold Weather Shipping Instructions:

Mailing Specimens During Cold Weather


Who should you contact with questions or supply requests?

Please feel free to contact us if you have a question about our services.

General information, forms and mailer kits:
Histopathology Laboratory,
Department of Veterinary Pathology
(515) 294-4188
(515) 294-3282
(515) 294-4328
(515) 294-7730

Technical information:

Phyllis Fisher
Laboratory Manager
(515) 294-0956 or pgfisher@iastate.edu

Joseph S. Haynes, DVM, PhD
Professor and Chair
(515) 294-0879 or jhaynes@iastate.edu

Access to Clinical Pathology and Histopathology Reports