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How to become a Radiologist

avg. starting salary

Good at seeing underneath the surface? You should be a Radiologist… A Radiologist uses imaging techniques such as X-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs, PETs, and CTs in order to diagnose disorders and diseases. They work closely with Radiographers, who carry out the scans needed to create these images, but may not interpret them. Although they have little communication with patients, they must share their findings with referring physicians in order to discuss and recommend possible treatment options. It’s also their responsibility to co-ordinate radiological services with other medical activities. Typical duties for a Radiologist include:
  • Working with other radiologic staff to instruct and monitor procedures
  • Using computer-aided detection or diagnosis systems to interpret images
  • Documenting outcomes of images
  • Recording patients’ medical history
  • Occasionally treating patients using medical radiation if needed
  • Assessing the need for further images to be taken

To become a Radiologist, a strong medical background is absolutely essential in giving you a solid understanding of the role and what it entails. In addition, you will need to be a logical thinker in order to decipher complex medical problems, and be able to carry out accurate risk assessments before recommending appropriate treatment to your patients. A Radiologist must also demonstrate:
  • Excellent motor skills and dexterity
  • The ability to operate medical equipment used to interpret images
  • Good verbal and written communication skills
  • A methodical and meticulous approach
  • Good attention to detail

"I’ve always been interested in science and the human body, and the concept of X-rays has fascinated me since I was little. This passion continued as I got older and, after many years studying (at University and on the job), I finally qualified to be Radiologist. I’m given new and exciting cases every day, and it’s a challenging task to diagnose individual illnesses based on images and patients’ medical history. But it feels like I’m solving a puzzle – and one could actually change people’s lives when it’s complete. And that’s a pretty amazing feeling."

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