Cytotechnologists are specially trained laboratory technologists who study the structure and function of cells in the human body. They examine cell samples under a
microscope to detect any changes that could indicate a disease, such as cancer.
• prepare slides of cell samples for examination.
• examine smears of cell samples on slides using a microscope.
• detect and report abnormalities in the color, size and shape of cellular
components and patterns.
• use automated equipment and instruments, including microscopes, to
prepare samples for microscopic study.
• analyze test results with pathologists and relay them to physicians.
• may assist physicians with collecting cell samples.
Most cytotechnologists work in hospitals, clinics or private laboratories under the
supervision of pathologists. Some may work in universities as professors or researchers.
Histotechnologists and histologic technicians prepare tissue samples for examination
by a pathologist. Their work is an essential part of determining whether a patient is
suffering from a disease, dysfunction or malignancy.
Average Salary Range
$38,000 – $53,000
Students intending to pursue a career as a
cytotechnologist should prepare by taking
challenging high school courses in science,
math and English. Students must complete
three years of college prior to entering a
12-month clinical internship program in
cytotechnology (offered at a college or
American Society for Cytotechnology
1500 Sunday Drive, Suite 102
Raleigh, NC 27607
(919) 861-5571 or 1-800-948-3947
American Society of Cytopathology
400 W. 9th St., Suite 201
Wilmington, DE 19801-1555
American Society for Clinical Pathology
2100 W. Harrison St.
Chicago, IL 60612
(312) 738-1336, ext. 440