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Cytotechnologist

Stain, mount, and study cells to detect evidence of cancer, hormonal abnormalities, and other pathological conditions following established standards and practices.


Cytotechnologist

Stain, mount, and study cells to detect evidence of cancer, hormonal abnormalities, and other pathological conditions following established standards and practices.

As known As: Cytology Laboratory Manager (Cytology Lab Manager); Cytology Manager; Cytology Supervisor; Cytotechnologist; Cytotechnologist Supervisor; Cytotechnologist/Cytology Supervisor; Cytotechnologist/Histotechnologist; Senior Cytotechnologist; Staff Cytotechnologist; Technical Specialist, Cytology

Daily Activities / Main Tasks

Cytotechnologists perform these as their core responsibilities

1. Submit slides with abnormal cell structures to pathologists for further examination.
2. Examine cell samples to detect abnormalities in the color, shape, or size of cellular components and patterns.
3. Provide patient clinical data or microscopic findings to assist pathologists in the preparation of pathology reports.
4. Document specimens by verifying patients' and specimens' information.
5. Examine specimens using microscopes to evaluate specimen quality.
6. Adjust, maintain, or repair laboratory equipment such as microscopes.
7. Prepare cell samples by applying special staining techniques, such as chromosomal staining, to differentiate cells or cell components.
8. Assist pathologists or other physicians to collect cell samples such as by fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsies.
9. Attend continuing education programs that address laboratory issues.
10. Provide patient clinical data or microscopic findings to assist pathologists in the preparation of pathology reports.

Cytotechnologists are laboratory professionals who study cells and cellular anomalies. Using a microscope, they examine slides of human cells for any indication that a cell is abnormal and/or diseased (i.e., cancerous or precancerous lesions, infectious agents or inflammatory processes). Cytotechnologists often play a crucial role in helping patients to recover from illness by identifying a disease while it is still at a treatable stage.

Cell specimens are obtained from various body sites, such as the female reproductive tract, the lung, etc., and then placed on slides using special techniques. Cytotechnologists examine the slides microscopically, mark cellular changes that indicate disease and submit a report to the pathologist for final evaluation.

Using the findings of cytotechnologists, pathologists can diagnose and treat disease -- in many cases, long before it could be detected otherwise. For instance, in recent years, fine needles are being used to aspirate lesions, even those that are deeply seated in the body. This has greatly enhanced the ability to find and diagnose tumors located in previously inaccessible sites.

As new screening and identification techniques for cancer are developed, cytotechnologists will continue to play an invaluable role in the diagnosis and treatment of disease.

Key Knowledge Areas

The Cytotechnologists must be knowledgable in these areas

Biology — Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Chemistry -Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

Top Skills / Important Qualities

To  be a great Cytotechnologist one must have these skills
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Science — Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
 

 

 

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