SDN members see fewer ads and full resolution images. Join our non-profit community!

Did you like Radiology as an MS1?

Discussion in 'Radiology' started by Sophie, May 6, 2007.

  1. Sophie

    Sophie Lead Foot 10+ Year Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Sacramento, CA
    I'm curious if those of you who are planning to go into Radiology enjoyed looking at the X-rays and CTs, and the 1 or 2 radiology lectures, that you were exposed to in 1st year. I've been doing a fair amount of research into specialties, and I seem to fit very well with Radiology, but so far I've found the bit of Radiology exposure we've had boring. I'm planning to shadow a Radiologist for a few days during this summer, but I'm wondering if my feelings at this point are indicative of anything. The reasons why I think Radiology is a good fit are the following:

    -My favorite class is Gross Anatomy, followed by Pathology
    -I'm very visually-oriented (learn best from/enjoy diagrams, charts, pictures, etc)
    -I really like technology, gadgets, and computers, and am pretty good with them
    -I love puzzles, and really want a specialty where I get to think a lot
    -I want to work in a calm environment, where I can really think something through before making a decision if necessary, not a setting like the ED where you have to make lightning-fast life-or-death decisions in a high-stress environment
    -This probably doesn't count for much, but every specialty test/quiz I take puts Radiology as #1
    -I love Physics (I don't know if that matters at all, but I know that you use Physics in Radiology)

    I'd love to know how you all felt towards Radiology in 1st year.
  2. SDN Members don't see this ad. About the ads.
  3. DrPunk

    DrPunk DrPunk 5+ Year Member

    Mar 1, 2006
    I didnt even think of Radiology as an MS1, or any specialty for that matter. But what you listed off especially the first few things sound exactly like me. I did my first rotation, and at that point had settled for Neurology, i came home the second day from my rads rotation knowing this was what I wanted to do and that it was where I SHOULD be. it was the the anatomy and path, the visuals, the potential future of technology

    Warning. Radiology rotation as a med student is boring. you are a third wheel, and youre not actually doing anything at all except sitting behind someone else. I even fell asleep a few times, this was after my life changing decision as described above. it is not the ideal setting to test out what a radiologists life will be like. What you can do is grab some cases from aunt minnie or anywhere online and do some of the analytical thinking/ puzzles and see if that appeals to you, flip through some of the rads books while shadowing and see if those topics interest you cause This is what you will be doing a LOT in rads, reading!
  4. Sophie

    Sophie Lead Foot 10+ Year Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Sacramento, CA
    Thanks for the reply and suggestions, DrPunk, and congrats on finding a good fit. :)
  5. DrBravesgirl

    DrBravesgirl Surgeon for a year 7+ Year Member

    Jun 4, 2002
    Radiology was wayyyy off my radar in my first, second, and halfway through my third year. I thought I'd go into ortho or ER or something. I did feel the same way as you though--I loved my physics courses in college and hs, I loved Anatomy and Path.
    And yes, rads as a 3rd year rotation is really boring. The key (for me) was doing rads electives (when the faculty realized that I wasn't just doing it to fulfill a requirement, and that I was really interested in the field). They let me do a lot more once I made it past the required rotation.
  6. jpro

    jpro Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Kitchen Stadium
    I loved physics so much that I made it my major and decided to go into med school in the pursuit of radiation oncology or radiology. That doesn't mean that I wasn't seduced by other specialties along the way. It's a good idea to keep your options open untill your third year.
  7. Sophie

    Sophie Lead Foot 10+ Year Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Sacramento, CA
    Thank you both for your replies. :)

    I'm definitely going to keep an open mind regarding all of the specialties, but I always like to have a tentative plan, even if that plan changes many times. It helps me feel like I have a sense of direction.
  8. UnderDoc

    UnderDoc Member 7+ Year Member

    Radiology is one of the more difficult fields to get an adequate sense of as a medical student. Without the requisite skill set to interpret the images flashing across the screen, you really can't participate in any meaningful way. My advice to you is to rotate as early as you can in radiology, perhaps spending some time during a summer break in the department or engaged in some sort of radiology-oriented research project. The best thing that you can do as a medical student is to demonstrate real interest in the field and a willingness to learn. Nobody is really going to expect you to know very much.

    In my opinion, radiology is a great field for those with an interest in the mechanism of disease, anatomy, pathology, technology/physics and a willingness to practice your craft out of the limelight. For those with an incessant need for exuberant ego-stroking, radiology may fall short as your contributions, though central to positive patient outcomes, are seldom recognized by their beneficiaries.
  9. Cold Penguin

    Cold Penguin Member 5+ Year Member

    May 15, 2004
    What is the best way to find the radiology-related research as 1M? Also, how easily would I be able to find a radiologist to shadow? When shadowing what kind of things should I pay attention to?

    Will it be possible to get involved with the radiology research as 1M or during the summer after 1M and to be able to do something that leads to publication?
  10. hans19

    hans19 I'm back... Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    Jun 9, 2004
    It may be better to shadow a radiologist once you have a grasp of medicine in general. During/after your 2nd year. After you know some pathophysiology and have taken clinical medicine courses. How else can you appreciate or understand radiology's role in medicine? Or any specialty's role in medicine? Learn to walk before you can run. and learn to stand upright before that...

    How about this? E-mail a radiologist at your medical school, introduce yourself, and say that you are interested in radiology and you wish to shadow someone... its as simple as that. Many medical schools have an advisor for radiology applicants. Contact that person to schedule a meeting.

    As for what to pay attention to-- what ever interests you! Do your homework... go to the library and browse through different radiology books, see what topics interest you. I encourage you to browse through many specialty textbooks so you can get a grasp of what is out there. Why limit yourself to radiology?

    Yes you can do research as a 1st year medical student, but at that point, you don't know much about radiology, or even the field of medicine at that point, and you can't offer much other than unskilled labor. I think with a few exceptions your opportunities might be limited. A good number medical schools have summer research programs that facilitate getting you into a lab between 1st and 2nd years.

    Some ideas for starters...
    Good luck
  11. Sophie

    Sophie Lead Foot 10+ Year Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Sacramento, CA
    Thanks for the advice, UnderDoc. If this summer shadowing seems interesting I'll look into getting involved in some radiology research during 2nd year.

Share This Page