Overview and Key Facts
(Above US Average)
Jobs in 2029
What Do They Do?A cytotechnologist could...
Quickly prepare slides from surgical patients to determine if all the tumor cells have been removed.
Save a child's life by detecting a serious infection in his blood samples and informing the doctors.
Examine a patient's biopsy under a microscope to determine whether he or she has colon cancer.
Evaluate spinal fluid samples from college students to determine if meningitis is making them sick.
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When a patient gets sick, his or her doctor will take sample cells from the affected part of his or her body and send them to a lab for testing to figure out what is wrong. This is where the cytotechnologist steps in. The cytotechnologist will take the sample cells, make slides from them, and examine the slides under a microscope. Cytotechnologists are trained to detect abnormalities in cells that come from all body sites in order to to make a diagnosis of cancer or other diseases. These professionals help pathologists and doctors diagnose diseases early, thus saving lives.
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Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Cytotechnologist?
- Critical Thinking: ? Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening: ? Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Reading Comprehension: ? Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Active Learning: ? Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Judgment and Decision Making: ? Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Complex Problem Solving: ? Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Monitoring: ? Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Speaking: ? Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Science: ? Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
- Coordination: ? Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Core TasksThink about if you'd like the typical tasks a Cytotechnologist might do:
- Submit slides with abnormal cell structures to pathologists for further examination.
- Document specimens by verifying patients' and specimens' information.
- Examine cell samples to detect abnormalities in the color, shape, or size of cellular components and patterns.
- Provide patient clinical data or microscopic findings to assist pathologists in the preparation of pathology reports.
- Maintain effective laboratory operations by adhering to standards of specimen collection, preparation, or laboratory safety.
- Prepare and analyze samples, such as Papanicolaou (PAP) smear body fluids and fine needle aspirations (FNAs), to detect abnormal conditions.
- Examine specimens, using microscopes, to evaluate specimen quality.
- Assist pathologists or other physicians to collect cell samples by fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy or other method.
- Assign tasks or coordinate task assignments to ensure adequate performance of laboratory activities.
- Adjust, maintain, or repair laboratory equipment, such as microscopes.
- Attend continuing education programs that address laboratory issues.
- Examine specimens to detect abnormal hormone conditions.
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