If you are a radiology resident, you probably spend more than eight hours a day in front of a computer. Just as a cardiologist might spend hours looking for the best-in-class stethoscope and a neurologist a perfectly balanced reflex hammer, a radiologist might do well to spend some time thinking about spiffing up your workstation.
These are not radiology-specific tools. They are also not mind-blowing innovations. Instead, their existence often go unnoticed. Like air, some tasks that these programs help you with are so ubiquitous you may not even even realize they could be improved.
Screen capturing is easy as 1, 2, 3
There is always a role for downloading full resolution TIFF images for publication purposes. However, sometimes you just want a simple screenshot for case conference or teaching file.
Fortunately, there’s a one that is on just about every modern Windows machine.
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The Radiology Society of North America (RSNA) annual conference is one of the most popular and most well-attended conferences in radiology. The deal is the same – you submit some academic work you completed, and if it is deemed worthy, you are offered a not-quite-golden ticket to attend the not-quite-chocolate-making conference center.
You spend upwards to one week in a place with 20,000 strangers pushing around, 4,000 some CME-worthy offerings, and another 700 vendors trying to decide whether you have money to buy a CT table. Sometimes people say that you go to the RSNA conference to learn about the newest research, to get ideas from being bathed in the sheer high density of smartness that we assumed would somehow disperse by diffusion. The research is great, the vendors are great, the city is amazing, but these aren’t the reasons to go to the RSNA conference. If the research is important enough you will see it in a journal, if you need a product you will find that vendor on the internet, and Chicago… is indeed amazing, but it would be more so in September than December.
The reason that tens of thousands of people come together on this one week is not for the great research. It’s for each other. Go for the great people. The world-class research is just a bonus.
Radiology’s largest annual conference is held in Chicago this year from Nov 29 – Dec 4
In the radiology reading room it is easy to get distracted. Phone calls, clinician visits, and of course, the actual study that sits on the screen.
For a second year resident taking night call at Hospital of University of Pennsylvania, independent interpretation is just half of the challenge (and one I describe as The Gorilla Detection Exercise). The other half comes from managing phone calls, protocols, and physician consultations.
… humans do not have Intel Inside. We suffer dramatic performance cuts because of the task-switching overhead.
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You are a fourth year medical student. You’ve worked hard for three years, passed the USMLE with flying colors, conducted some spectacular extracurricular work. And you’ve decided to pursue diagnostic radiology. Continue reading →
This post is part of a series on preparing for the radiology core exam.
No, I don’t actually have the answer to the whether gamification can improve learning effectiveness.
But my radiology class might find out first hand through our QBank Challenge!
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This is the first in a series of posts about preparing for the radiology core exam.
September is an interesting month for third year residents. Your upper class residents finished the core exam 2-3 months ago and receive their scores in August. The new editions of preparation books for the next year are often published around this time.
And, if you are like me, September is the month you might do some practice cases from a question bank and realize the you have a lot of work to do.
This series of periodic short posts will documents the progress of my core exam preparation. I am at best a mediocre test taker who happens to procrastinate a lot; this is a bad combination for standardized testing. By keeping this series, hopefully I can keep up with what will be an overwhelming volume of information that I will have to know.
Starting a new residency is tough. With new opportunities come new challenges: balancing between learning a new discipline and getting involved in scholarly endeavors can be stressful in its own right.
A sound advice I heard as a first year resident was to hold off unnecessary involvement early during the residency. A free license to procrastinate.
However, procrastination implies a postponing of something inevitable, not to mention that research and quality improvement projects are parts of the residency requirement.
So the question remains, when does it make sense to get involved? And how? Continue reading →
The clock hit 7pm. My thumb off the deadman switch on the dictaphone. The glow of the reading room workstation monitors reflected off my glasses. I squinted. A click of the mouse. A curious pause.
And then there it was. I saw…
Nothing. A worklist with zero unread exam.
Inbox zero, Epic Radiant variant.
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Radiology residents have a massive volume of information to keep track of in the discipline, consisting of texts, images, and sometimes videos.
The variety of data type is made more complex by the data sources, from website clippings, PDF from PubMed, a slide from noon conference, or simply freehand typing.
To complicate matters, a resident also must keep abreast many sets of requirements, documentations, conferences, reimbursements, and academic projects.
How do you keep track of it all? Continue reading →
Your academic mentors invest their time in your future, so they want to see you succeed.
Your friends and loved ones care about your well being, so they want to see you succeed.
Your department invest equipment and resources on your training, so it wants to see you succeed.
But the real world has no accountability to you, so it doesn’t have to care about your success.
That’s a good thing because the real world only cares about actual good work. So put your ideas project out there, and let the world see. Send out an abstract, write a paper, propose a grant.
Whatever the outcome, you learn where you stand. It’s the market economy at work, and the academic equivalent of an open beta test.
So it’s not so much about putting forth your best work – you can’t always tell what “best” is.
It takes courage just to put forth work, and more so to let the others decide.