Radiology and Imaging Sciences

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Breast Imaging Fellowship

The Department of Radiology and Imaging Sciences at IU School of Medicine offers up to three fellowship positions in breast radiology each year. This is a one-year, non-ACGME-accredited program. Fellows gain experience in screening and diagnostic mammography, diagnostic ultrasound and the full range of breast interventional procedures. They learn digital-interpretation skills, using both Hologic and GE workstations, and MRI-interpretation skills using CADstream and DynaCAD. Additional experience and research opportunities are available in MR imaging, MR-guided breast interventions and tomosynthesis.

Program Requirements

For the Campbell-Klatte Annual Oration, which is held in the spring of every academic year, fellows are required to complete a breast imaging research project. Breast Imaging fellows also have the opportunity to participate in multi-disciplinary breast conferences, department noon conferences and journal club.

Facilities and Equipment

Fellows in this program train alongside teaching faculty to perform breast imaging services at St. Margaret’s Diagnostic Breast Center, Indiana University Hospital, and Methodist Hospital Breast Center as well as other facilities in the surrounding counties if Indianapolis. Equipment includes multiple digital mammography units on campus, including seven digital tomosynthesis units with biopsy capability; five dedicated breast ultrasound units; two prone stereotactic biopsy tables with Suros vacuum-assisted biopsy consoles; five upright sterotactic biopsy tables with Suros vacuum-assisted biopsy consoles; multiple 3.0T and 1.5T MRI scanners (Siemens and GE) with breast biopsy coils; and DynaCAD and Aegis MRI biopsy software.

Curriculum

Fellows are responsible for rendering interpretations of breast imaging studies including digital mammography with tomosynthesis, breast ultrasound and breast MRIs. All breast-imaging studies are supervised by a faculty radiologist. All breast ultrasounds are performed by the breast-imaging radiologist, giving fellows an excellent opportunity to gain clinical skills and vital experience correlating breast lesions across the imaging modalities.

Fellows gain experience with all breast-imaging interventional procedures, including localizations before surgery performed with mammography and ultrasound guidance, upright and prone vacuum assisted stereotactic biopsies, vacuum-assisted and automated ultrasound guided biopsies of the breast and axilla, as well as vacuum-assisted biopsies with MRI guidance. Fellows are responsible for preparing the weekly radiology cases with staff guidance and supervision for the interdisciplinary breast cancer conference, which allows for coordination of patient care across specialties.

Rotations through the three hospitals typically occur in two month blocks to allow fellows to experience continuity of care. All rotations provide well-rounded training with exposure to a wide variety of cases and procedures, ensuring that fellows are prepared for any future breast-imaging career. In the second half of the year, fellows develop independence to ease the transition into staff roles.

Call Responsibilities

Breast imaging fellows participate in the general radiology call pool, which includes 160 hours of call responsibility for the academic year, and they function as the staff radiologist signing out cases independently. The call shifts may or may not involve resident staffing sessions. The call shifts cover emergency room imaging as well as inpatient and outpatient studies. Call shifts ensure the fellow is exposed to a wide variety of imaging cases throughout the year to develop independence and confidence by acting as the staff radiologist on the call cases. Participation in call contributes to the overall education that fellows receive to help them successfully transition into junior staff roles.