Nuclear Medicine Physicians

Diagnose and treat diseases using radioactive materials and techniques. May monitor radionuclide preparation, administration, and disposition.

Median Annual Wage: $187,200

Education: Post-doctoral training (78%); Doctoral degree (17%); Some college, no degree (4%)

Projected Growth: Faster than average (15% to 21%)

Related Job Titles: Physician; Director of Nuclear Medicine; Nuclear Medicine Medical Director; Nuclear Medicine Physician; Assistant Professor of Radiology; Associate Professor of Medicine; Associate Professor of Radiology; Medical Director, Nuclear Medicine Department; Medical Doctor, Nuclear Medicine; Nuclear Medicine Specialist

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Medicine Physicians.

More Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Careers

  • Check and approve the quality of diagnostic images before patients are discharged.
  • Establish and enforce radiation protection standards for patients and staff.
  • Interpret imaging data and confer with other medical specialists to formulate diagnoses.
  • Prescribe radionuclides and dosages to be administered to individual patients.
  • Review procedure requests and patients' medical histories to determine applicability of procedures and radioisotopes to be used.
  • Direct nuclear medicine technologists or technicians regarding desired dosages, techniques, positions, and projections.
  • Determine appropriate tests or protocols based on patients' needs or conditions.
  • Compare nuclear medicine procedures with other types of procedures such as computed tomography, ultrasonography, nuclear magnetic resonance imaging, and angiography.
  • Monitor handling of radioactive materials to ensure that established procedures are followed.
  • Monitor quality control of radionuclide preparation, administration, or disposition ensuring that activities comply with applicable regulations and standards.
  • Advise other physicians of the clinical indications, limitations, assessments, or risks of diagnostic and therapeutic applications of radioactive materials.
  • Perform cardiovascular nuclear medicine procedures such as exercise testing and pharmacologic stress testing.
  • Administer radioisotopes to clinical patients or research subjects.
  • Interview and physically examine patients prior to testing.
  • Calculate, measure, or prepare radioisotope dosages.
  • Teach nuclear medicine, diagnostic radiology, or other specialties at graduate educational level.
  • Consult with patients following radiation treatments to provide information and assess outcomes or to recommend further consultation or treatments as appropriate.
  • Test dosage evaluation instruments and survey meters to ensure they are operating properly.
  • Monitor cleanup of radioactive spills to ensure that proper procedures are followed and that decontamination activities are conducted.
  • Formulate plans and procedures for nuclear medicine departments.
  • Direct the safe management and disposal of radioactive substances.
  • Provide advice on the selection of nuclear medicine supplies or equipment.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Medicine Physicians.

  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Medicine Physicians.

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