To become a veterinary radiologist you must first earn your doctoral in veterinary studies. There are many options of residency programs for a veterinary radiologist. (different from regular nuclear medicine programs)

Once you have earned your graduate veterinary certificate and have gained at least a years’ experience in practice you can then join a residency training programme that will lead to becoming qualified in radiology or radiation oncology. The veterinary radiology residency program takes 3 years to complete, areas studied include Roentgen diagnosis, diagnostic ultrasound, diagnostic nuclear medicine, magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography.

The residency will provide you with the clinical skills of using these mediums to make clinical assessments and will familiarise you with the different equipment used. The veterinary radiation oncology residency program takes approximately 2 years to complete. The course will train you in the therapeutic application of ionising radiation.

Areas studied include radiation biology and physics, medical and surgical oncology and familiarise you with diagnostic tests used to assess the stage of disease.

Veterinary radiologists are specialists in using diagnostic imaging to assess and treat clinical problems. The diagnostic techniques such as computer tomography or magnetic resonance imaging allow the practitioner to identify areas of injury within the animal’s body.

The radiologist identifies and reports on the injury or disease so that a treatment plan can commence. The radiology speciality allows the veterinarian to have board certification. In 2011 there was only a small number of people working in this field; 408 board certified specialists in radiology and only 81 board certified specialists in radiation oncology. The board certification exam involves both a written and oral test.

The exam is accredited by the American college of veterinary radiologists, passing the exam provides the vet with diplomat status. In order to maintain certification continuing education is necessary and there is a prerequisite that a certain amount of educational credits are earned each year. It has been indicated by the doctor of veterinary medicine magazine that veterinary radiologists earn in the region of $152,995 per year, due to their speciality status they tend to earn more than an everyday vet. The Bureau of Labour Statistics predicts a rise of jobs across the veterinary profession.


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