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The accurate and early diagnosis of oral disease is the cornerstone of effective and comprehensive dental care. At Tufts Oral Pathology Services, that is precisely what our expert oral and maxillofacial pathologists help dentists and physicians offer patients.

Tufts Oral Pathology Services is a full service oral pathology laboratory at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Our services are provided by leading oral pathologists on the faculty of the dental school. In addition to providing laboratory services to dentists and physicians, Dr. Mark Lerman offers in-person evaluations for patients with oral disease.

On this page find out more about our comprehensive services, continuing education, why you should choose Tufts Oral Pathlogy Services, and our highly skilled pathologists

Comprehensive Services

Biopsy Services

Our primary focus is histopathologic analysis of biopsy specimens. We provide soft and hard tissue evaluation following:

  • Gross examination (with decalcification, when necessary)
  • Processing of formalin-fixed biopsy specimens
  • Routine hematoxylin and eosin staining

When indicated, special studies, including histochemistry, immunohistochemistry, and in situ hybridization also are performed.

Immunofluorescence Services

When evaluating patients with desquamative gingivitis, direct immunofluorescence may help confirm a diagnosis of mucous membrane pemphigoid or pemphigus vulgaris. To run immunofluorescence studies, tissue cannot have been preserved in formalin; therefore, if you are considering these diagnoses or other vesiculobullous disorders, you need to use an immunofluorescence kit to submit a biopsy specimen in Michel’s medium in addition to submitting a routine biopsy in formalin.

Cytology Services

We also evaluate liquid cytology specimens. 

Clinical Oral Pathology Services

Tufts’ Oral Medicine Clinic offers in-person evaluations for patients with oral disease. Our clinic is in downtown Boston on the 6th floor of Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Continuing Education

Tufts University School of Dental Medicine offers a variety of continuing education programs. To register for one of Tufts Dental School’s continuing education programs, please visit the Continuing Education page

Why Choose Us?

State-of-the-Art Services

We process and analyze your patients’ specimens using state-of-the-art equipment and procedures. Our primary focus is histopathologic analysis of biopsy specimens. We provide soft and hard tissue evaluation following:

  • Gross examination (with decalcification, when necessary)
  • Processing of formalin-fixed biopsy specimens
  • Routine hematoxylin and eosin staining

When indicated, special studies, including histochemistry, immunohistochemistry, and in situ hybridization are performed. We also evaluate immunofluorescence and liquid cytology specimens. In addition, Dr. Mark Lerman offers in-person evaluations for patients with oral disease.

Exceptional Oral Pathologists

Our pathologists have extensive expertise in the field of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology.

  • We are on the faculty of Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.
  • We are board-certified Diplomates of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology or American Board of Pathology.
  • We hold leadership roles in academic and national dentistry organizations.
  • We are widely published in prominent peer-reviewed journals.

Fast & Convenient Service

Our practice is committed to making submitting specimens to us as easy and convenient as possible. We provide:

  • Complimentary biopsy, immunofluorescence, and cytology kits that you can request by email (TOPS@Tufts.edu), phone (866-670-8677), or fax (617-636-6780) or online
  • Pre-paid local and nationwide courier pickup of specimens via FedEx
  • One-day turnaround for routine biopsy cases from the time we receive your specimen to when we fax or mail you the pathology report
  • Direct billing to your patients’ medical insurance (self-pay patients also accepted)

Accurate & Thorough Reports

Along with our expert final diagnosis, our detailed pathology reports include photomicrographic imaging, gross and microscopic descriptions, and corresponding current ICD codes for insurance claims.  For challenging diagnoses, we also will call you to discuss the diagnosis and implications for patient management.

Our Pathologists

Our board-certified pathologists have extensive expertise in the field of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, are on the faculty of Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, hold leadership roles in academic and national dental organizations, and are widely published in medical and dental peer-reviewed journals.

Mark A. Lerman, D.M.D. is the Laboratory Director of Tufts Oral Pathology Services, where he also practices clinical oral pathology. He is the Division Director of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and an Associate Professor at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (TUSDM).  Dr. Lerman graduated from TUSDM in 2002 and completed a one-year general practice residency at Harvard School of Dental Medicine and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. After undergoing his oral pathology residency at New York Hospital Queens, Dr. Lerman joined the faculty at Harvard School of Dental Medicine in 2006 and was appointed in the Department of Surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. Dr. Lerman returned to TUSDM as a member of the faculty in 2014.

Dr. Lerman is a Fellow of the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and a board-certified Diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology. Dr. Lerman has multiple publications in medical and dental peer-reviewed journals on a variety of pathology subjects. Dr. Lerman has delivered numerous invited continuing education courses and oral/poster presentations at regional, national, and international meetings and conferences. He has chaired and is a member of multiple committees within his specialty’s national academy, is a past president of the Eastern Society of Teachers of Oral Pathology, and is currently a commissioner with the Commission on Dental Accreditation. Email Dr. Lerman. 

Tanya A. Wright, D.D.S. is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Wright is a 2001 graduate of Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry and completed her oral pathology residency in 2004 at New York Hospital Queens. Upon completion of her training, Dr. Wright was appointed as an Assistant Professor at Meharry, and in 2008-09, she served as Interim Chair of the Department of Oral Diagnostic Sciences. She was selected as a member of the 2007 ADEA/AAL Institute for Teaching and Learning, and she earned a student choice award from the Meharry Dental Class of 2010. Dr. Wright joined the TUSDM faculty in 2015.

Dr. Wright is a Fellow of the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and a board-certified Diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology. Dr. Wright has delivered numerous invited lectures and continuing education courses. Her research interests include salivary gland malignancies and salivary diagnostic testing. Email Dr. Wright. 

Nora M.V. Laver, M.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at Tufts University School of Medicine and in the Division of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Laver is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires School of Medicine and completed a residency in pathology at Georgetown University Medical Center. She then completed a fellowship in cytopathology at Georgetown University Medical Center, and completed Callender-Binford Fellowships in ocular pathology and in oral and maxillofacial pathology, both at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology.  In addition to directing ocular pathology at the New England Eye Center, she has served as their Director of Pathology Residency Training, Director of Cytopathology, and Director of Head and Neck Pathology. She is a consultant pathologist at Boston Medical Center’s Department of Pathology and at Atrius Health – Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates.  Dr. Laver joined the TUSDM faculty in 2013.

Dr. Laver has published over 50 medical peer-reviewed articles and 12 book chapters, organized two head and neck cancer conferences, and participated in numerous presentations and continuing education courses locally, regionally and internationally.  Dr. Laver’s training and experience uniquely qualify her to evaluate head and neck pathology specimens.  She is certified by the American Board of Pathology in anatomic pathology and cytopathology. Email Dr. Laver. 

Number for dentist and physicians: 617-636-6510 

Billing Department: 617-636-6979 (for patients’ questions about bills or insurance claims)

Email: TOPS@Tufts.edu

Address: Tufts Oral Pathology Services, One Kneeland St., 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02111

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