The following characters are (mostly) fictitious, the conversation invented for illustrative purposes.
Johnny Fallsalot (JF): Hi there, Neighborhood Radiologist, how‘s the family?
Neighborhood Radiologist (NR): Oh, we’re fine, Mr. Fallsalot. Just back from a week at the beach with Mrs. NR and NR Junior. How is that shoulder doing?
JF: Oh, just fine, after a few weeks of physical therapy. Thanks for looking at my shoulder MRI; it helped me have a more informed conversation with my own doctor.
NR: I’m always more than happy to help.
JF: Um, not sure if you heard, but I was putting up a new hummingbird feeder a few weeks ago and fell off my ladder—right into the new hydrangeas. Wouldn’t you know it, I screwed up my knee.
NR: Sorry to hear that! I thought I noticed some hydrangea damage, but they are still beautiful.
JF: Thanks, tell that to Mrs. Fallsalot please. I had an MRI of my knee a few days ago, and wouldn’t you know it, Dr. Internist thinks I need surgery. I’d love if you could take a look and give me your thoughts.
NR: Of course, bring your MRI over anytime!
Conversations like this occur with regularity in the life of the Neighborhood Radiologist, and I would reckon in the lives of just about every radiologist. It is my profession to interpret medical imaging studies—MRIs, CTs, ultrasounds, and X-rays—on a daily basis. On occasion, friends and family like Johnny Fallsalot will elicit my (unofficial) second opinion on an imaging study that has already been interpreted by another radiologist. I am happy to help them better understand the radiologist’s interpretation as it relates to their own health.
Some of you may be grabbing your imaging CDs, stamping them furiously, and addressing them to “Neighborhood Radiologist, U.S.A”. Please, do not send me your imaging studies. Seriously. Not only is it highly impractical and likely redundant, it is also not the reason I started this website.
Well then, you say, what is the reason, Neighborhood Radiologist?
Neighborhood Radiologist’s mission is threefold:
- Educate patients about radiology using easy-to-understand language.
- Shed light on the work that radiologists do.
- Strengthen the connection between patient and radiologist.
I have come to realize, through interactions with patients in my professional and personal life, that medical imaging can be quite confusing and opaque. Many patients do not fully understand why their doctor ordered an imaging study; how an imaging study is performed; who is involved in ordering, performing, and interpreting imaging studies; and—perhaps most critically—what the results of an imaging study mean.
About this website
Neighborhood Radiologist is intended for the general public. Many excellent reference websites are available to radiologists, yet these sites are often littered with jargon that is all but indecipherable without a medical background. Let me help to translate and sift through the information relevant to you.
I don’t pretend to speak for all radiologists. My modest goal is to help distill the vast and rapidly-changing landscape of medical imaging into smaller, more digestible bits. Assuming you don’t plan to become a radiologist, you can at least take advantage of my training to help better understand your health.
I will strive to keep information as current as possible. Nonetheless, medical research and evidence-based medicine often change rapidly. If new data become available, I will do my best to ensure posts are revised and updated. Do not hesitate to contact me if you feel an error has been made; my ultimate goals are accuracy and relevance. Finally, please remember that these articles are for informational purposes only, and should not replace the advice of your physician.
Have a look around, find out more about me, and learn about the field of radiology and about yourself. Odds are we don’t live anywhere near each other, but through this website I hope to play the role of your friendly Neighborhood Radiologist.