A Day in the Life of a Radiologist
Let’s take a post to introduce ourselves. This will not be an introduction of us individually but rather a collective introduction. We are radiologists. We are medical doctors with 5 years of specialty training in radiology after medical school. That’s where we could have finished, but many of us did additional subspecialty training in different aspects of radiology like neuroradiology, ultrasound, body imaging, musculoskeletal imaging or breast imaging. So clearly we love schooling, training and practicing in radiology.
It is an exciting field where we have the pleasure and privilege of ‘looking inside’ our patients every day. This is how we take care of you. We carefully and thoughtfully examine imaging studies including CT, MRI, nuclear medicine, ultrasound, X-rays, mammography and fluoroscopy. In radiology we scrutinize images for both normal and abnormal findings in an attempt to detect causes for patients’ symptoms. Our interpretations help the referring doctor or clinician to care for patients. Often, imaging is the key to a diagnosis, from appendicitis to Zenker’s diverticulum.
In addition to looking at images, we perform procedures that are based on imaging – some of these for diagnosis, like barium examinations of the gastrointestinal tract, and many for therapy, like drainage of fluid collections or dilating arteries. Here, we get hands on time with our patients, helping to find problems and to provide solutions.
Admittedly we spend a fair share of time “behind the curtain” in a darkened reading room where images are shared via computer for interpretation. Rest assured we are never bored. Time flies between image interpretations, dictating cases, sharing information with our referring doctors and performing exams such as fluoroscopy or other procedures. Complex cases are the norm, and often require consultation between us as radiologists and your referring doctor. We have a key role in consulting with doctors and patients in ensuring the appropriate imaging study is done in the appropriate manner.
Your radiology test may not involve direct interaction with your radiologist – you will not see us every time. But we will be there, focused on your images to help keep you in your best health. We love what we do – that’s why we’re here.
Originally published 2/20/14 on diagnosticimagingcenterskc.com.