Hello. I am Dr. Celina Nadelman and welcome to my practice. I know you have many doctors to choose from, but I am honored to have a bit of your time to tell you a bit about myself, and why choosing my practice may make all the difference.
I am a board certified cytopathologist, which is a special kind of pathologist. My area of expertise is in fine needle aspiration (FNA), which is a biopsy done by a very small needle. I know that having a biopsy, no matter how small, can be worrisome and stressful. I am committed to making my patients feel secure and comfortable. And because I have a background in internal medicine, I have experience working directly with people. I’m not just sitting in a lab, like most pathologists, looking at slides. Also, when an FNA, is performed and then interpreted by the same person, diagnostic accuracy increases. That means you get correct answers fast.
But before I go into more detail about my practice, I would like to share a little bit about my background to illustrate why I was drawn to pathology in general and in fine needle aspiration (FNA)…and what makes me one of the best in the field. As an undergraduate, I studied psychology and studio art. I was always a visual thinker and in medical school, I found that my arts background was a good fit for pathology, which is a visually oriented discipline. It was in my first year of residency at a county hospital that I discovered my passion for FNA. I really enjoyed the patient contact (most pathologists do not see patients) as well as the opportunity to help solve the mystery of whatever ailed patients, from beginning to end.
As you probably know, pathologists are not the only doctors who do fine needle aspiration biopsies. For instance, an ENT, endocrinologist, surgeon or a radiologist could perform the same biopsy. However, he or she is not trained to read the slide under the microscope, and thus, cannot make the diagnosis. It has to be sent to the lab, where a pathologist makes the diagnosis to see whether the lump sampled is cancer or not. Sometimes, patients must return for another procedure if the specimen is determined not good enough to make a diagnosis. This adds time and money, let alone anxiety, to what could otherwise be a simple procedure. The opportunity to treat patients compassionately, efficiently, accurately and cost-effectively became an obvious choice for me.
With a bedside manner developed during my years as a clinician, I see how important it is to view the patient’s problem wholistically. By meeting the patient personally, doing a focused history and physical exam, and viewing the lesion under ultrasound, I am in a unique position to put together all this important information in order to formulate a better, faster, more accurate diagnosis. In
addition, as a cytopathologist, only a doctor like me can do on-site evaluation of one of the slides, which allows me to see if I have enough material, or if I need to send it for other tests. This virtually eliminates the need for repeat biopsies. The specimen is then processed in my laboratory, where I then read it on my microscope and make a diagnosis. Basically, I am a one-stop shop. And because of this streamlined process, I can get better diagnostic results as quickly as possible.
In addition, as a private practice pathologist, I have close relationships with my referring doctors, and will often call them to discuss the findings very soon after I have taken a first look of the sample. Many times, a preliminary diagnosis can be given hours after the procedure. This helps to lower patient anxiety and can guide the doctor as to what to do next, in a timely fashion.
Let me share an example of how my services contributed to the best possible treatment of a patient. A patient was referred to me because of a rapidly growing thyroid lump (mass). The initial assumption was of a worst-case-scenario nature: a poorly differentiated thyroid cancer. I met with the patient, performed the biopsy and looked at the slide under a microscope. I saw immediately that it wasn’t thyroid tissue at all; but rather it was something completely different: lymphoid tissue (resembling a lymph node). Right then and there I took another sample in a separate tube to send to an outside laboratory for special testing. The results came back as Non-Hodgkin B-cell Lymphoma, and not thyroid cancer. The patient was referred to an oncologist without delay and appropriate chemotherapy was initiated. Because of this streamlined approach, surgery was avoided, which would have made the entire experience more invasive, lengthy and expensive.
When performed by the right, skilled person, an FNA can be a very powerful tool. My goal is to use that tool in a compassionate, patient-centered environment, while engaging in open and immediate communication with your referring doctor, to give my patients the best care possible.