What Can a Radiologist Do?
Subspecialized radiologists have completed a fellowship of one or two additional years of residency to pursue specific areas of focus that allow them to concentrate on single body parts/diseases through clinical work and research.
Having your medical imaging procedures performed by a subspecialized radiology group means that your images will be interpreted by a radiologist who is trained specifically in the type of exam interpretation or procedure required to meet your particular needs. Subspecialized radiology also results in less waiting time, shortened visits, and decreased patient costs through reducing the need for additional medical imaging examinations. A subspecialized report leaves your referring physician (often your primary care physician) at ease with the quality and accuracy of the results, confident about moving forward with your treatment without the need for additional imaging and time.
Diagnostic imaging is used to identify diseases and injuries of the body. Continue reading to learn about the most common diagnostic radiology subspecialties.
Interventional radiology (IR) specializes in minimally invasive, targeted treatments performed using imaging guidance, often in lieu of surgical procedures. Interventional radiologists read x-rays, ultrasound, and other images in order to guide small instruments (such as catheters) through blood vessels to treat diseases through the skin.
IR procedures are less invasive than surgery because there are no large incisions, less associated risk, pain, and cost, as well as shorter recovery times. Common IR procedures include biopsies, draining fluids, inserting catheters, or dilating or contracting narrow ducts or vessels.
Subspecialized neuroradiologists focus on abnormalities of the brain, central and peripheral nervous system, spine, head, and neck. These physicians utilize advanced technologies including CT and MRI to deliver exceptional image interpretations and exam consultation when time is of the essence, such as in cases of a stroke or aneurysm.
Common neurointerventional radiology procedures include prevention and treatment of stroke, aneurysm, deep vein thrombosis, and other neurovascular disorders. Neurointerventional radiologists work closely with neurointerventional surgeons, neurologists, primary care physicians, as well as imaging nurses and technologists to provide a coordinated, informed, effective approach to neurointerventional patient care.