Careers in The Field of Radiology
Radiology is divided into three main categories. This includes the General Radiography, the Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Ultrasound, and the Nuclear Medicine. Each division offers a vast range of radiologist jobs to choose from. Of course the salary also differs depending on their career and other factors as well.
There are many different and exciting job positions available for those interested in pursuing Radiology Careers. For example, you can work in hospitals, doctor’s offices and radiology labs across the country where you can find yourself taking x-rays, instructing patients on what they need to do to prepare for it and administering any special medication. Some radiographers may even work with CT scanners and MRI machines and ultrasounds are also conducted by people in the Radiology field. If you ultimately decide to become an actual radiologist, then you will be the one reading the test results and diagnosing patients.
Being a Radiologic Technologist requires that you have compassion and understanding for patients with a variety of conditions and circumstances. It is your job to position the patient properly so that the best possible image can be obtained for diagnosis and to keep the patient calm when anxiety may be running high.
Another entry point into a career in radiology and medical imaging is Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Becoming an Ultrasound Tech, now properly called a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer, is achieved when you complete an associates degree and pass an exam administered by the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers). The technology used in sonography is different than radiography; ionizing radiation is not used, but instead high frequency sound wave technology is used to capture images.
There is a common misconception that being an Ultrasound Tech is a simple procedure in which someone moves a wand-like device around the body, while images are magically captured on a screen. The reality is that being an Ultrasound Tech requires a keen sense of anatomical structures and their location and relation to one another. A highly developed understanding of anatomy and above average hand eye coordination is a must for anyone considering a career in ultrasound. You must be able to understand what you are looking at on the screen in order to get the best image for the physician to review.
Choosing a career in radiology and medical imaging can seem overwhelming, given all the options. Usually, one of the main paths will spark your interest more than another. If you’re not sure about it, contact a local diagnostic medical imaging center or the radiology unit in a local hospital and ask if there are any volunteers who would be willing to talk about what it is like to be in their shoes. Finding out first hand about the challenges and realities as well as what is rewarding about the job can be eye opening. You should also talk to representatives from schools offering radiology programs and be prepared with a list of questions about the programs to ensure it matches your unique skills and unique desires.
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