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Fields in Medical Imaging

written by: Angela Atkinson•edited by: lrohner•updated: 7/31/2008

Medical imaging consists of many different fields of study and there are various training programs available depending on the course of training desired to achieve.

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    There are many different fields that use medical imaging as part of their scope of study and research. There are a lot of opportunities for anyone who is wishing to pursue a career in medical imaging, and those opportunities continue to expand as time goes on and more branches are developing from the applications of medical imaging. Some of the main fields that use medical imaging include:

    • Medical Sonography
    • Computed Tomography
    • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
    • Medical Technology Systems

    Most fields of medicine use medical testing in one form or another and to different levels. In the medical field, medical imaging produces images of the internal structures of the body and helps doctors determine problems in the structures in order to treat the conditions. Medical imaging is safe and effective and is one of the most widely used forms of medical testing available.

    To any person who is looking to pursue a career in medical imaging, there are various levels and courses of training that need to be completed, and each is a little different depending on the focus of the program. One of the most widely used fields, CT and MRI are specialty programs and depending on the course of study and location of study, they vary from six to twelve months in length. CT programs train students to be able to perform various CT procedures. MRI programs train students to be able to use MRI equipment that can produce images inside the body.

    Students in a Diagnostic Medical Sonography program will learn to work hands on with various imaging components in lab settings. There is also training in Diagnostic Medical Sonography, which prepares students to perform ultrasound examinations. Training in this program, also includes education on the anatomy and physiology of scanned organs, as well as learning to recognize sonographic patterns and being able to correctly give technical impressions to an interpreting physician

    Certain educational institutions, that specialize in medical imaging training, will breakdown their program, into specific levels. Each level consists of its own documentation, labs, lectures and etc, which each level getting progressively more advanced.

    Training in the Radiologic Technology program, is essential in Medical Imaging, because it teaches students to take pictures of the human body, which are used to identity diseases and other medical conditions. Training in Radiological Technology, also provides practice and skills in effective documentation, communication, and care for patients.

    Nuclear Medicine Technology is another important program, which is related to medical imaging. It trains students in computer applications and imaging techniques, as well as providing education on physical sciences, radiation exposure and its effects, radiation protection and procedures, plus the usage of radiopharmaceuticals

    Once training is complete, the student should be ready to perform, as a medical imaging professional, be able to pass the American Registry of Radiological Technologist examination, and become certified in the field of Radiological Technology.