A histotechnologist is a highly specialized person in the medical field and is crucial to the treatment of patients. They run and perform diagnostic tests on patient tissue samples to examine the microscopic aspects of diseases. In addition to diagnosing diseases at the cellular level, they provide guidance on how to treat these diseases in a way that is specifically tailored to an individual patient’s pathology. The histotechnologist is responsible for not only these diagnostics, but also the machinery involved, which often includes complex laboratory instruments.
There are a few qualifications for this job that are fairly consistent throughout the field. The first is a bachelor’s degree in a physical science. You also need to know various lab techniques, including cell staining, immunohistochemical staining, and molecular fluoroscopy. You need to be familiar with the tools of the job and how they run. The person should be certified by the American Society of Clinical Pathologists as a histotechnician or histotechnologist. Experience working in a lab is almost always a must, as this is a critical part of the job.
You will be working in a lab, either in a hospital or offsite. Your hours will be regular business hours, and you will be working alongside chemists, biochemists, and physicians. You will be part of a team that treats patients in a group fashion, each member contributing a different portion.
Use, maintain, and calibrate laboratory equipment, and keep a clean, disinfected work space.
Receive, log, and document patient specimens and accompanying forms.
Prepare tissue samples by fixing, staining, dying, trimming, and other methods.
Identify and document technical issues, quality assurance, and procedural improvements.