The author cordially thanks many of my colleagues and friends who encouraged me. More than 150 pathologists and clinicians kindly supplied me valuable cases, samples, photographs, antibodies and probes. I am very sorry that I have to omit to list up their names here. Most of the names and affiliations can be seen in my Japanese-written textbook entitled "Atlas of Infectious Disease Pathology" published from Bunkodo Co., Tokyo in April, 2000.
The CD-ROM was completed by devotional and skillful cooperation of the members of Yamagiku Printing Co., Nagoya, and of the secretary Ms. Chikayo Yashiro of the Department of Pathology, Fujita Health University School of Medicine, Toyoake.
A few months earlier, Prof. Toshiaki Manabe, Department of Pathology, Kyoto University School of Medicine, Kyoto, proposed me to make a CD-ROM version of "Pathology of Infectious Diseases" for the presentation at Kurashiki Seminar in the autumn of 2003, held in Kurashiki, Okayama. I dared to plan to cover all the fields of infectious disease pathology. Eventually, a total of 237 cases are presented in the CD-ROM. Additionally, 194 reference cases are also included. The total number of figures in this CD-ROM sums up to 1,151. The case presentation is grouped into seven organ categories, including the gastrointestinal tract, hepatobiliary and pancreas, respiratory system, neuromuscular system, genitourinary system, skin and other systems. They are also sorted into six categories of pathogens, such as the bacteria, fungi, viruses, protozoa, helminth and others.
In a routine practice of histopathological diagnosis, pathologists tend to give the maximal effort in making a diagnosis of neoplastic diseases as precise as possible. However, the same pathologists may use a too simple and fuzzy diagnostic term such as "chronic inflammation", "abscess", and "granuloma" for the lesion of infectious diseases. Instead of "granulomatous lymphadenitis", we pathologists should clarify the etiology of the granulomas as much as possible. For the cytopathological diagnosis of the uterine cervix, for example, Gardnerella vaginitis should also be commented in addition to the diagnosis of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia. The straightforward reason for this is that the exact etiological diagnosis of infectious diseases can lead the patients to the appropriate treatment and cure. The prompt and precise diagnosis of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, nosocomial infections and sexually transmitted infections has an important social aspect for the prevention of unnecessary transmission of pathogens. It is of no doubt that the intimate communication and cooperation between pathologists and clinicians are essential. Pathologists must not hesitate to ask clinicians to provide detailed clinical information and to add laboratory and molecular examinations.
Any pathologist has a chance to encounter any kind of infectious diseases, primarily because of the globalization of the world, change of sexual behavior, popularization of gourmet diet, increase of immunosuppressed patients, spreading of drug-resistant pathogens and advent of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases. I sincerely hope that this CD-ROM will help pathologists all over the world make an appropriate histopathological diagnosis of infectious diseases for the patients and for the human society.