Cytotechnologists study cell samples from patients to detect cellular changes that may indicate cancer.
December 06, 2007 — Duration: 3:07
[B. McGahey] I\'m Barbara McGahey Frain. I\'m a clinical assistant professor for the Cytotechnology Program here at Indiana University\'s School of Medicine Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and we encourage students to come and find us who are interested in biology. Sometimes they have a favorite topic such as microbiology, or they really loved an anatomy class, or sometimes an art history class where they\'ve been forced to use some visual recognition skills.
Most of our job entails looking through the microscope at slides, cellular preparations from the human body, looking for cancer and pre-cancerous change, and sometimes infectious agents.
[ANDREA] I had many different majors before choosing cytotechnology. I started off with nursing, nuclear medicine - anywhere in the neighborhood. What I did, actually, is I went job shadowing. That\'s when I found cytology, and I enjoyed it. Just sitting at the scope going over cases with the pathologists just like we do everyday.
[ANTHONY] I chose cytotechnology as my major because, well, my brother-in-law actually introduced me to the field. I was originally a pre-pharmacy major, but I decided to go a different route. And I noticed that a lot of the prerequisites were the same for cytotechnology. And I researched it, and it seemed like a fascinating field. And I definitely saw myself doing that.
[LAURA] What I enjoyed most about my experience in the program is rotations through the many different hospitals on campus. We get to rotate through Indiana University Hospital, the Veteran\'s Hospital, Wishard Memorial Hospital and also Methodist Hospital.
[B. Frain] Different places that our graduates can find positions include hospitals, private laboratories, and sometimes professional laboratory facilities such as private industry, large corporations. Some of our graduates will find their way to graduate school, some go to professional school - such as medical school, sometimes they would even go into the business side - the business aspect of medicine. But many of them are happy working as cytotechnologists.
[ANTHONY] Well, I like cytotechnology because we\'re impacting a patient\'s life, but we\'re kind of behind the scenes. But we\'re still playing a vital role.
[ANDREA] I like a lot about cytotechnology, but probably the best thing is having an impact in the patients\' lives. You have that slide - fresh sample, and you\'re taking a look at it, and you\'re on the front line to make a decision whether that person has cancer or even more importantly, we enjoy when it\'s negative, too.