A radiologist is a physician who specialises in the analysis of images of the body. They would make use of a range of investigative techniques, such as x-rays and ultrasound scans. The work of a radiologist is of utmost importance in the diagnosis of patients, and is crucial to the application of rapid and essential treatment. Such professionals would need to work face-to-face with patients in order to carry out testing, and would need to ensure the patient’s safety is taken care of. Medical conditions a radiologist would deal with include cancer and fractures.

Radiologists would need to continue studying throughout their career, and would also need to ensure they learn of any advances in the investigative techniques used to test and diagnose patients. There may be the need to be on call. Radiologists can be found in hospitals, specialist medical centres and even organisations such as the armed forces. This is an area of medicine that is continuing to move forward, and there is a constant need for new and upcoming radiology physicians.

Work activities

Typical work activities a radiologist would need to carry out include the following:

  • Carry out investigative techniques and treatments such as x-rays, ultrasound scans, chemotherapy, radioactive isotopes and hormone therapy.
  • Put patients at ease during testing and ensure that they understand the process involved.
  • Analyse and interpret test results and decide upon a diagnosis as soon as possible.
  • Work with a host of medical professionals from differing specialities.
  • Work in hospitals, specialist testing centres and for private organisations, such as the armed forces.
  • Keep up-to-date with any advances in the diagnosis of patients through medical imaging.
  • You will not only need a good understanding of testing techniques, but also medical applications.
  • Work with patients throughout their recovery, particularly when working with those who have cancer.

Essential skills

  • Attention to detail.
  • Ability to work as an individual and as part of a medical team of specialists.
  • Excellent communication skills.
  • Able to work well in stressful conditions.
  • Critical thinking.
  • Extensive knowledge of and an aptitude for the medical profession.
  • Real desire to help patients get better.
  • Deal with sometimes difficult topics.
  • Be understanding of patient concerns and anxieties.
  • Good levels of dexterity.
  • Desire to keep learning and improving your skills.
  • Practical skills.
  • Confident of your skills but also knowledgeable of your limitations.