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Three Advanced Career Options for Radiology Technologists and Technicians

Depending on your career goals and your current education, you may be in school to train for work as radiologic technologist or technician between one and 4 years. You'll be earning an associate degree, a certificate, or a bachelor's degree--and it can surely be worth your while. According to the Department of Labor, job openings for radiologic technologists are projected to rise by 15 percent from 2006 to 2016.

Hospitals will be the main employer of newly trained radiologic technologists and technicians, but jobs will also open up at medical offices and diagnostic imaging clinics. If you are interested in continuing your training, you can advance into more complex, better-paying positions with a specialty.

Here are three key areas to consider:

Computerized Tomography (CT)
Radiographers and technologists can take additional training to learn the computed tomography specialty. The images taken in a CT scan comprise a three-dimension image used in diagnosing conditions and assessing treatment. To prepare, you'll need training in operating CT equipment, following physician's prescriptions for the procedure, position the patient. Since the equipment uses ionizing radiation , technicians must be trained in and follow safety precautions. CT technologists are tested by and registered with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT).

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
MRI equipment uses non-ionizing radio frequencies to create a three-dimensional image. Training includes the set up and use of MRI equipment, patient preparation, following physician orders, and recording the images. MRI technicians may hold associate or bachelor's degrees and are registered with the ARRT.

Trained mammographers work with x-ray imaging used in the diagnosis of breast cancer and other ailments. Additional training in breast pathology and mammography can prepare you for operating digital equipment used in patient preparation and positioning (CC and MLO), rendering high image quality, and conducting interventional procedures.

The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT)
U.S. Department of Labor

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