You can easily identify ciliated epithelial cells by their small size and characteristic shape. Note that the cilia are present in a dense band at the apical surface:
It can be even more challenging when the ciliary tufts become detached (called detached ciliary tufts/DCTs or ciliocytophthoria). I've featured this multiple times on my blog in the past and have described how to differentiate ciliated host cells from other microorganisms. Check out these past posts for more information:
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