About Systemic Pathology

Here’s a summary of the most important stuff about our Systemic Pathology (DDS 6254) course for Fall, 2022.

You can download our syllabus here.

Systemic Pathology will provide you with a basic understanding of the causes, mechanisms, and effects of human disease in all organ systems. Here’s some of the cool stuff you’ll be able to do after finishing this course:

  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 email me at kkrafts@umn.edu with any questions you have regarding the course.

The textbook used in this course is Kumar V, et al (eds): Robbins Basic Pathology, 10th ed., Philadelphia, WB Saunders. This textbook is totally optional – so you just should use (or not) as you see fit.

Our lecture schedule is on the lectures page. All lectures will be delivered as pre-recorded videos that you can watch whenever you want.


There are 3 quizzes and 4 exams in this course. You can see what each quiz and exam covers on the lectures page. The point scores of the quizzes and examinations will be added together to give a single numerical point score for the course, and grades will be determined as follows:

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

Grades will be posted on Canvas.

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