The first three years are spent in the core rotations of fluoroscopy, plain film ultrasound, computer tomography, neuroradiology and pediatric radiology. Near the end of the first year, residents are introduced to musculoskeletal and mammography. As second-year residents get more experience, they are given more responsibility in the core rotations. During the third year, all residents attend a four-week course at the American Institute for Radiologic Pathology (AIRP), a program of the American College of Radiology, focusing on correlation of gross, microscopic and radiologic pathology.
In the final year, residents are allowed to select and participate in rotations that will reflect the desired areas of subspecialty focus as they enter practice. There is enough latitude to provide several months of training in a specific area, depending on the individual resident’s desires and needs. Additional time for research is provided on an individual basis.
There are at least three months of required experience in special procedures. Residents will learn to perform the full range of procedures including angiography, angioplasty/stenting, thrombolysis, embolization, biliary drainage, percutaneous nephrostomy, neurointerventional procedures, RF ablation, cryoblation and Y-90 radioembolic therapy. There are no fellows, so residents are able to participate in all procedures as the primary or secondary operator, depending on their experience.
Residents spend three to four months on the ultrasound rotation. Hands-on training is provided in all aspects of ultrasound, including high-risk obstetrics and image-guided biopsies and drainage procedures.
Each resident spends three to four months learning fluoroscopy. Single and double contrast image-guided procedures are performed and interpreted by the resident in both the hospital and outpatient facilities.
Residents spend approximately three to four months interpreting plain films taken in the hospital and in a very busy Emergency Department. Plain films are interspersed throughout all rotations; all films are reviewed with an attending radiologist.
The Emergency radiology rotation is an evening rotation (Monday - Friday, 5 p.m.-1 a.m.) where the resident experiences one-on-one teaching with the radiologists on call. Staff radiologists provide 24-hour in-house coverage, and the residents experience a variety of studies while on this rotation.
Four months are spent in the mammography rotation. The majority of the time is spent studying digital screening and work-up mammograms; however, residents also perform wire localizations and stereotactic biopsies. Residents participate in MRI-guided breast procedures, Positron Emission Mammography (PEM) and Tomosynthesis.
There are five months in the nuclear medicine service. Residents monitor and interpret a variety of studies, including nuclear and PET scanning. Residents are also involved in therapies, including Sr-89 and I-131.
At least three months are spent learning musculoskeletal radiology. MRI has become the primary imaging modality in evaluation of skeletal abnormalities but residents also gain experience in plain films, CT and arthrography.
While participating in pediatric rotations at Sacred Heart, residents are involved in studies from Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital.
Staff radiologists provide 24-hour in-house coverage. Call duties are divided evenly among the residents on weekends and holidays.
We have a very active conference schedule including a daily noon conference and Thursday teaching afternoons, 1-5 p.m. The didactic curriculum for each section of radiology is repeated every two years, meeting accreditation requirements. A dedicated physics professor from Eastern Washington University teaches the physics curriculum, which incorporates all aspects of physics, including NRC requirements.