The Breast Imaging Fellowship Program at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., is one year in length and emphasizes all aspects of breast and gynecologic imaging. As part of the training in cross-sectional gynecological imaging, you will develop general skills in ultrasound, with exposure to all facets of sonographic imaging and interventional procedures.
You also will receive training in basic obstetrical sonography on site, and can choose to gain additional exposure to sonographic evaluation of fetal anomalies through an off-campus rotation.
Recognizing that many individuals with interests in Breast Imaging have other interests, the program allows individuals to supplement their training with electives in other body imaging areas for up to 50% of their clinical time.
The Breast Imaging Fellowship is largely a clinical experience in which the fellow develops the diagnostic, procedural, technical and interventional skills in the areas of breast and gynecologic imaging through instruction and supervised practical experience.
You will be assigned to work in subspecialty areas of the Radiology Department under the direct supervision and instruction of faculty members whose expertise, clinical skills and research interests are aligned with the goals of the fellowship. These work assignments will rotate on a daily basis, to foster an integrated educational experience.
The primary objective of the fellowship is to provide a graduate of an accredited radiology program the opportunity to develop expertise in the areas of breast and gynecologic imaging and imaging-guided interventional procedures by giving you the opportunity to:
- Interpret more than 2,000 mammograms and 300 breast ultrasound examinations.
- Perform more than 50 stereotactic breast biopsies.
- Perform more than 100 ultrasound-guided breast biopsies and cyst aspirations.
- Perform more than 25 localization procedures.
- Interpret more than 250 pelvic ultrasound examinations, including transvaginal imaging.
- Interpret more than 40 pelvic MR examinations.
- Participate as the lead author in at least one project designed to lead to publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
- Review the radiologic-pathologic correlation of at least 75 adnexal masses and 200 breast lesions.
Breast Imaging and Intervention
At least 50 percent of the fellow's clinical activity will be dedicated to breast imaging and intervention, though the fellow can elect to increase the percentage of their time working in this area if desired. Clinical activities will include interpretation and performance of screening and diagnostic mammograms, breast ultrasound, ultrasound-guided biopsies, pre-operative wire localizations, stereotactic biopsies, cyst aspirations, ductography, PET scanning, sentinel node scintigraphy and breast MRI examinations.
Ultrasound and Gynecologic Imaging and Intervention
Up to 50 percent of the fellowship will be focused on general ultrasound and the cross-sectional imaging and interventional procedures related to gynecologic imaging (e.g., pelvic ultrasound and MR examinations, transvaginal ultrasound-guided interventional procedures, hysterosalpingography and sonohysterography). The fellow can decrease the percentage of their time in this area if desired, replacing it with electives in other cross-sectional rotations.
Since gynecologic ultrasound examinations and procedures comprise approximately 25 percent of all the cases performed in the ultrasound section, you will have significant training in non-gynecologic sonographic examination. Furthermore, to improve ultrasound-guided biopsy skills, you will participate in non-gynecological ultrasound-guided procedures, including thyroid biopsies, liver biopsies and other lesion-targeted procedures.
Because Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale is not a referral center for obstetrical care, you will have the opportunity to spend up to four weeks working with the obstetrical ultrasound laboratory at Phoenix Perinatal Associates, with whom the Department of Radiology at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale has an ongoing educational relationship.
Fellows can spend up to 25 percent of the fellowship in other body imaging rotations besides ultrasound. This would include rotations in Body MRI and Body CT.
Each month, there are approximately two intradepartmental ultrasound case conferences, two intradepartmental breast case conferences, two multidisciplinary breast conferences and four department-wide radiology conferences.
In addition, there are multiple conferences in other radiology subspecialty areas in which you can participate. Videotapes of daily radiology conferences at Mayo Clinic in Rochester are available for review.
The department will fund registration and travel expenses for attendance at one domestic radiology meeting of your choosing, with approval from the program director.
Clinical research is expected, and you will be given up to 20 percent academic time to fulfill this expectation. The department will fund your participation in national and regional meetings at which your clinical research data is presented. Publication of research in peer-reviewed journals is encouraged.
You will be responsible for a total of five weeks of call during the fellowship. Call is well-supervised and all previous fellows have commented that the call experience proved to be one of the best aspects of the fellowship, since it provides a supervised transition to independent practice. Mayo Clinic follows the recommendations of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).
Off-campus moonlighting is permitted during this fellowship. Moonlighting activities may be scheduled during those times when you are assigned to consultative or outpatient rotations. Moonlighting should not interfere with required learning and must not violate the ACGME's work hour rules. Moonlighting should not compromise your education, but rather enhance it.
You will have the opportunity to teach other radiology trainees and staff, as well as residents and staff from other departments who rotate through and interact with the Radiology Department.
To ensure that you acquire adequate knowledge and develop your technical skills, your performance will be monitored carefully during the course of your fellowship. Your supervising faculty will evaluate you formally on a quarterly basis. In addition, you will regularly evaluate the faculty to ensure that your educational needs are being met.