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Women's Imaging

Discussion in 'Radiology' started by Green Grass, 04.21.12.

  1. Green Grass

    Green Grass

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    Anyone have any information on Women's Imaging fellowships? Are they competitive? What are the "good"/most competitive programs?

    I can't find much about them on SDN (or anywhere on the net for that matter), so any input you have would be helpful. Thanks.
  2. shark2000

    shark2000

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    What is your level of education?

    I assume you are a medical student. It is very early for you to decide on.
    Also i wonder you know what exactly women imaging is about.

    Generally speaking its core is breast which includes mostly mammo, US, US guided biopsy and Stereo biopsy and breast MRI. BREAST MR is a very small fraction of your job (about 2-3 a day ), though is increasing in number. In the foreseeble future most of your work is mammo, US and biopsy. The course is 6 months fellowship, though many general rads have the skill to do it, but like the rest of medicine it takes time to good at it.
    Now most programs offer 6 months of fellowship. Some combine it with body and make a year.
    Some combine it with high risk ultra-sound OB, some prenatal MR (which is a the level of academic centeres for now, similar to cardiac MR) and some more experience in GYN US and call it women's imaging.

    For a level of medical student it does not seem reasonable to me to ask about competetiveness of programs.
    Breast imaging is competetive these days though you still can find a spot if you are flexible. Traditionally it was one of the least competetive ones. It has all to do with the job market. About 6 years ago even big names had problem filling their spots. Generally mammo is not interesting to an average radiologist compared to Neuro, MSK, body, ....
  3. Green Grass

    Green Grass

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    Yes, I am a medical student. However, this label will change to resident in four short weeks. Spare me the hierarchy and condescending attitude about what I need to know and when. This board is filled with it and it helps no one.

    I thank you for your reply and sharing your knowledge about the fellowships. It's ironic you took the time to write this reply and even spoke about the competitive programs vs. least competitive ones, yet failed to give the specific names of those programs. One of the purposes of this thread was to get the names of those programs which are competitive vs. not. I realize YOU don't deem it "reasonable" for me to ask this question, however none of us got to our current positions without planning ahead, and I don't plan to change that habit anytime soon.
  4. colbgw02

    colbgw02 Delightfully Tacky

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    I would say that women's imaging is still on the low-to-intermediate level of competitiveness, although it has certainly improved in recent years.

    I don't have any specific institutions to offer, but you might want to check the big cancer hospitals (Sloan-Kettering, MD Anderson). After all, breast imaging (which is most of women's imaging) is almost entirely about detecting breast cancer.

    Also, a given radiologic subspecialty is a small enough world that it's mostly about the fellowship director rather than the institution. That is, if Big Wig X decides to move from one hospital to another, he can essentially flip the reputation of the corresponding programs overnight. Accordingly, you might try checking out the authors of the principle breast imaging texts or doing a literature search. If a name comes up repeatedly, then there's a good chance that they're running a highly-respected fellowship.
  5. shark2000

    shark2000

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    I appologize if my post was insulting. I didn't mean it.
  6. shark2000

    shark2000

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    It seems to be more competetive than what colbgw stated. I would say it is more competetive than neuro, chest, MSK, body. Probably it is a bit less competetive than IR, though in a specific geographic location maybe more competetive.
    Currently Sloan-Kattering is one of the best. It offers a one year fellowship combined with body. Other good names are UCSF which offers a one year fellowship including 6 month of mammo and 6 month of high risk OB, BWH which is a 6 month program and UPenn are other big names. I bhave not specifically heard about MD Anderson, but it should be a good one.

    Good Luck.
  7. colbgw02

    colbgw02 Delightfully Tacky

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    No way that women's imaging is the second most competitive fellowship, unless you're claiming that cardiac or nucs is up there, which I doubt you are.
  8. Dumb

    Dumb USMLE Tutor - PM me for info

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    Hmm...so this is the current fellow competition ranking?:
    IR>mammo>neuro=msk>chest>body

    Based on what you said, HMS seems the best of both worlds: you get Dana-Farber for cancer and BWH for the rest. Loved my experience at both places, but don't know anything really about rads fellowships.
  9. shark2000

    shark2000

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    So what is your order of competitiveness?
    I have found IR and Mammo the most competitive ones.
    Neuro is not competitive at all as the job market is not good for neuro.
    MSK is in the middle. Peds is not competitive at all.
    Body is getting more competitive.
    Cardiac, Nucs and Chest are open doors for almost everybody. You just need to apply to get these.

    This is at least my experience. On the other hand, I agree that there is not any official report as the fellowship application in radiology is very disorganized.
    Also there is huge regional differences and also huge year to year variability.
    So this year MSK may be super-competitiveness in South Cali and Neuro may be competetive in Boston, while in texas mammo becomes competitive. Most people do fellowship in the same region they do residency and most people stay in their home programs for fellowship as they think one year is not worth moving.
    In general Radiology fellowships are not competitive. Even for IR you can match somewhere for sure and if you are from a reputable program you will end up in a good one if you do not stay at your program.
  10. colbgw02

    colbgw02 Delightfully Tacky

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    I agree with you that this is a very difficult thing to judge.

    The best "evidence" that I have that breast imaging is not competitive are the job listings. In an otherwise stagnant job market, you'll still see plenty of public opening for mammographers. Most other job openings aren't even advertised in this sort of market because there are people lining up to take them.

    Why is that? I submit it's because most radiologists have not been and continue not to be interested in being breast imagers. Sure, there are a few people who will do women's imaging in a down market just to get a job, but most people are unwilling to pigeon-hold themselves into breast imaging over a 30 year career, even if it means not getting a job in the short-term. The truth is that - even in a down market - radiology continues to not produce enough breast imagers to meet demand.

    I also agree with you that, overall, radiology fellowships are not competitive. Like with most things in medicine, the top programs in most subspecialties will be very competitive. But if you want subspecialty X, you'll get it, albeit not necessarily at a "name" program. Accordingly, I think it's more instructive to look at the number of "name" programs for a subspecialty. The less competitive will have fewer (e.g. peds: CHOP, Cleveland Clinic, MGH), whereas the more competitive ones will have more (e.g. MSK: UW, Stoller, UCSF, UCSD, Mayo FL, HSS, Duke, UVA, AIRP).

    I also agree that there is a tremendous amount of regional and year-to-year variability, and it may very well be the case that where you are mammo is highly competitive. I just have a hard time universalizing that since it doesn't jive with A) my personal experience from very different parts of the country and B) the job market.
  11. DrBowtie

    DrBowtie Responsible?!?! PGY3 Moderator Emeritus

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    Just going to throw this out there based upon my experience on the interview trail, but Cardenosa at VCU seemed to be a pretty big deal in Mammo.

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