Body Imaging Fellowship
The Body Imaging Fellowship in the Division of Diagnostic Imaging at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center offers extensive experience in cross-sectional oncologic imaging that includes CT, MRI, ultrasound and PET/CT imaging. Fellows are given the opportunity to perform CT/US guided deep biopsy procedures, if they elect to. Additional electives at affiliated institutions in the Texas Medical Center, such as St. Luke's and Methodist hospitals, allow the fellow the opportunity to broaden their exposure to include benign musculoskeletal disease. Fellows are provided 20% academic time. Fellows also actively participate in multidisciplinary tumor board conferences.
State of the art equipment includes:
- 12 clinical MRI scanners (nine 1.5T and three 3.0T)
- 13 multislice Helical CT scanners (seven 16-slice and three 64-slice)
- 15 US scanners (including two intra-op units)
- Four PET/CT (one dedicated PET)
There are 42 full-time faculty in body imaging.
Goals and Objectives
The objectives of the Body Imaging Fellowship are to:
- Educate trainees in the advanced interpretation of CT, MRI and ultrasound examinations of the body and in the performance of ultrasound-and CT guided procedures
- Educate trainees in the biology, treatment and recurrence patterns of malignant tumors, particularly as they are reflected in body imaging studies
- Provide an opportunity for academic research, using the case material and resources of MD Anderson
Criteria for Selection of Trainees
Trainees must have completed an ACGME approved (or equivalent) residency training program in diagnostic radiology and should be board certified or eligible by the American Board of Radiology.
Selection will be supervised by the program director of body imaging, with the consultation of other faculty members in the section. Materials solicited for review will include a CV, medical school transcripts, residency program director’s recommendation, three other letters of reference and a personal statement. Interviews will be required.
A minimum of three and maximum of six fellows will be appointed for each year. This will depend on the applicant pool and the availability of funds.
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center is an equal employment opportunity employer.
Duties and Responsibilities of Trainees
The trainee will spend his or her time approximately equally divided among the areas of CT, MRI and ultrasound. In CT and MRI, responsibilities will include protocol design for patient studies and occasional monitoring of studies for patient safety and diagnostic accuracy. The majority of the time will be spent in the interpretation of clinical cases. The studies will all be reviewed by a faculty member, but will then be dictated by the fellow. Graded responsibility will be given over the year for the consultation service with clinicians. In addition, expectations for the number of cases prepared and read should increase over the year.
In ultrasound, the fellow will scan cases after the technologist and will present the findings to the faculty. The findings will then be reviewed and dictated by the fellow. After sufficient training on phantoms and demonstration of acceptable level of proficiency, the fellow will perform ultrasound guided needle biopsies under the direct supervision of the ultrasound faculty. There will also be opportunity for the fellow to supervise portable ultrasound studies on the wards and participate in intra-operative ultrasound studies. In addition the fellow may rotate for one month on the interventional service to plan and perform CT and US guided biopsies and for one month on the PET/CT service. A rotation in musculoskeletal imaging will also be available through an affiliation with St. Luke’s Hospital. An elective rotation that addresses MRI and musculoskeletal imaging will be available through an affiliation with Methodist Hospital.
The trainee will have one day per week off the regular schedule for research. It is the responsibility of the trainee to identify a mentor and project early in the year and to complete a potentially publishable paper by the end of the year. Academic time will also be used to prepare for multidisciplinary tumor board conferences. Under faculty guidance, fellows will actively participate in preparation and presentation of imaging studies tumor board conferences so that they better understand available treatment strategies and management of various malignancies.
In addition, the trainee will give at least one noon lecture during the year while in MRI. In addition, part of the “academic day” will be spent preparing for a weekly clinical conference, i.e., reviewing the films and the patient histories with the faculty assigned to that conference and attending and/or presenting the cases at that conference. The pancreas, liver, colorectal, pediatric lymphoma and melanoma (and sarcoma) conferences have been chosen as the fellows’ responsibility, and the trainees will rotate through all six during the year.
The trainee is responsible for body imaging “call” on a rotating basis, but no more frequently than every third or fourth weekend. This involves coverage of all the emergency CT and ultrasound exams requested between Friday at 5 p.m. and Sunday at 10 p.m. Some of these calls may be taken from home.
Physical requirements are those related to visual perception, communication and manual dexterity.
Abdominal imaging faculty will provide supervision on all cases interpreted by a trainee. Procedures will initially be closely supervised; however, it is expected that less faculty involvement will be required as the year progresses.
Duration of the Training Program
The duration of the program will be one year. An optional second year will be available in some cases for the trainee to pursue a more in-depth experience in oncologic imaging especially in the developing area of PET scanning and the correlation of PET scanning with other imaging modalities, and to further explore research opportunities in oncologic imaging. A more flexible, tailored program will be possible in this second year with increased independence in clinical areas.
Evaluations of the trainees will be performed monthly through the institution’s “New Innovations” software. The program director will meet with the fellows twice during the year by means of a standardized form with ample space and encouragement for comments. The program director will meet with the trainees informally to review their progress and to discuss their feedback on program/faculty performance. The trainees will also evaluate the program at the end of the year. They will fill out a form on-line through “New Innovations” software as well as meet informally with the program director to discuss their experiences in the program.
How to Apply
Apply to this program using the DISCOVER online application system.
Raghunandan Vikram, M.D.
Division of Diagnostic Imaging, Unit 1476
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
1515 Holcombe Blvd
Houston, Texas 77030