RSNA: Techs prep to embrace future of molecular imaging

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CHICAGO--Molecular imaging is here to stay, posed David Gilmore, MS, CNMT, program director of nuclear medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. Yet, molecular imaging continues to evolve and impact the technologist. Gilmore peered into the crystal ball to help techs better understand the coming molecular imaging revolution and its impact on them during a Tuesday morning educational session at the annual 2009 Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) meeting.

Molecular imaging will intersect with personalized medicine, said Gilmore. Cancer imaging is moving toward biological characterization of tumors, predicting progressions and outcomes, predicting treatment response, treatment stratification and predicting toxicity.

In addition, he said that molecular imaging will play a larger role in drug development. It will be used to examine drug interactions with tumors, genetic components of cancers and response to drugs.

The coming molecular imaging revolution spells change for radiological technologists. Techs need to prep for an array of new roles including advanced technologist and clinical trials technologist, he stressed. If techs don’t embrace these roles now, Gilmore cautioned, other professionals will stake a claim in molecular imaging.