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Radiologist vs. Interventional Radiologist

Posted in: Articles December 16, 2016 By Stan Gottfredson Read by 752 Users

Both radiologists and interventional radiologists are medical professionals whose work entails the use of X-rays and other imaging techniques. Nevertheless, the purpose of the procedures they specialize in differs greatly, as well as their education and training.

What Is the Primary Difference between a Radiologist and an Interventional Radiologist?

The main difference between the role of a radiologist and that of an interventional radiologist refers to the purpose of their task:

  • Radiologists are doctors whose expertise allows them exclusively to evaluate and subsequently diagnose diseases and injuries. Moreover, a radiologist often acts as a consultant to the physician, helping them decide upon an efficient and suitable treatment approach by reviewing and interpreting the results of the imaging examination.
  • Interventional radiologists are board-certified physicians who are specialized in providing minimally invasive and targeted treatments using X-rays or another type of imaging techniques such as MRI.

How Does an Interventional Radiologist Treat Asbestos-Related Conditions?

The focus of an interventional radiologist’s expertise is treating diseases and conditions such as vascular diseases, uterine fibroids, pleural effusion, as well as numerous types of cancer, including mesothelioma. Treatment involves the use of minimally invasive procedures, which can significantly alleviate or, in certain cases, completely cure symptoms of these affections. Aided by X-rays or other imaging techniques, which allow them to carefully monitor the targeted region of the body, physicians specialized in interventional radiology navigate small medical instruments such as catheters through blood vessels and organs during the treatment procedures.

How Similar Are the Education Requirements of a Radiologist and an Interventional Radiologist’s?

In order to obtain their qualification, both radiologists and interventional radiologists need to undergo a clinical internship after receiving their degree in medicine. However, the subsequent professional training is quite different:

  • The first have to complete their residency training in Radiology.
  • The latter are required to complete a two-year residency in Interventional Radiology.

The purposes of radiology and interventional radiology are complementary, since the imaging specialist provides the physician with a complex and detailed report of the examination results. Consequently, benefitting from the radiologist’s expertise, the interventional radiologist will be able to opt for an effective and appropriate treatment option depending on the particularities of each case.