What does a Nuclear Medicine Physician do?
Diagnose and treat diseases using radioactive materials and techniques. May monitor radionuclide preparation, administration, and disposition.
- Test dosage evaluation instruments and survey meters to ensure they are operating properly.
- Teach nuclear medicine, diagnostic radiology, or other specialties at graduate educational level.
- Schedule examinations and staff activities.
- Provide advice on the selection of nuclear medicine supplies or equipment.
- Monitor cleanup of radioactive spills to ensure that proper procedures are followed and that decontamination activities are conducted.
- Monitor handling of radioactive materials to ensure that established procedures are followed.
- Formulate plans and procedures for nuclear medicine departments.
- Direct the safe management and disposal of radioactive substances.
- Establish and enforce radiation protection standards for patients and staff.
- Advise other physicians of the clinical indications, limitations, assessments, or risks of diagnostic and therapeutic applications of radioactive materials.
- Conduct laboratory procedures, such as radioimmunoassay studies of blood or urine, using radionuclides.
- Review procedure requests and patients' medical histories to determine applicability of procedures and radioisotopes to be used.
- Prescribe radionuclides and dosages to be administered to individual patients.
- Prepare comprehensive interpretive reports of findings.
- Perform cardiovascular nuclear medicine procedures such as exercise testing and pharmacologic stress testing.
- Monitor quality control of radionuclide preparation, administration, or disposition ensuring that activities comply with applicable regulations and standards.
- Direct nuclear medicine technologists or technicians regarding desired dosages, techniques, positions, and projections.
- Interview and physically examine patients prior to testing.
- 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.
- Consult with patients following radiation treatments to provide information and assess outcomes or to recommend further consultation or treatments as appropriate.
- Consult with anesthesiologists regarding recommended dosages or combinations of sedative drugs.
- Calculate, measure, or prepare radioisotope dosages.
- Check and approve the quality of diagnostic images before patients are discharged.
- Administer radioisotopes to clinical patients or research subjects.
- Interpret imaging data and confer with other medical specialists to formulate diagnoses.