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How to do it: the clinicopathological conference
  1. Richard John Davenport1,2
  1. 1 Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, UK
  2. 2 University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Richard John Davenport, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh EH4 2XU, UK; rjd{at}


The prime purpose of the clinicopathological conference (CPC) is education, delivered ideally in an entertaining and engaging manner. This article tackles both how to organise a CPC (more challenging than it might appear) and how to survive as a CPC discussant (always challenging). The patient at the heart of the CPC will have had a challenging and difficult illness. The reanalysis of the clinical presentation by the discussant, a re-exploration of their clinical journey, is the key to the educational value of the CPC rather than the ultimate diagnosis. A well-delivered CPC is the pinnacle of educational events in neurology, and this article highlights some useful tips on both sides of the divide.

  • education
  • clinicopathological conference
  • CPC

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  • Contributors RJD wrote the article.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed by Marty Samuels, Boston, USA.

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