Course Title
Systemic Pathology (DDS 6254)
University of Minnesota School of Dentistry
Minneapolis, MN

Here’s our syllabus, in case you want to see all the official course details.

Systemic Pathology will provide you with a basic understanding of the causes, mechanisms, and effects of human disease in all organ systems. After finishing this course, students will understand how diseases impact patients, and will be able to modify treatment and care accordingly. Students will also be able to recognize common oral manifestations of systemic diseases in order to provide more complete patient care. This course is preceded by the General Pathology course (DDS 6253) given in the DDS2 summer semester.

After finishing this course, you will:

  1. Be able to recognize oral manifestations of systemic diseases such as leukemia and lupus. Many diseases have manifestations in the oral cavity; dentists may be able to identify such lesions early in the disease course, before the patient seeks medical care.
  2. Understand how common diseases, such as heart disease and emphysema, may impact the health of your patients. A knowledge of the medical implications of these diseases will help you safely manage your patients – and will deepen your understanding of your patients as a whole.
  3. Be familiar with the purpose and practical usage of commonly ordered laboratory tests (such as hemoglobin and liver function tests). This is important for general knowledge and for boards.
  4. Understand the etiology of common medical conditions (e.g., the risk factors for atherosclerosis). Your patients may listen to you more attentively than they do their physicians.

The Course Director is Kristine Krafts, M.D. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you have regarding the course. You can come find me before or after class in our lecture room, or email me (kkrafts@umn.edu), call (626-7996), or stop by my office (16-206 Moos).

The textbook used in this course is Kumar V, et al (eds): Robbins Basic Pathology, 10th ed., Philadelphia, WB Saunders. You should use the textbook however it benefits you in order to supplement and reinforce the content you receive in lectures.

Our lecture schedule is on the lectures page. Next to each lecture, you’ll see links to that lecture’s powerpoint in a bunch of different formats. I don’t print out handouts for the class because I end up recycling most of them – it seems to waste less paper to let you guys just print what you need. All lectures will be automatically recorded on Mediasite (I’ll post the link here when I get it).


There are 4 10-point quizzes and three exams (approximately 50, 40 and 70 points) in this course. You can see what each quiz and exam covers on the lectures page. The scores of the quizzes and examinations will be added together to give a single numerical score for the course, and grades will be determined as follows:

  • A = scores greater than or equal to 90%
  • B = scores between 80% and 90%
  • C = scores between 70% and 80%

Grades will be posted on Canvas.

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