Diagnostic Radiology

Clinical Environment and Equipment

Facilities: Spectrum Health Butterworth performs an average of 348,000 studies per year. Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital opened in January of 2011 and houses the pediatric radiology department. It is a beautiful, building, with walkways to the rest of Butterworth Hospital, as well as the MSU Medical School building. The Lemmen-Holton Cancer Center at Spectrum Health received the American College of Radiology’s Breast Imaging Center of Excellence Award and is where our residents complete rotations in PET. Spectrum Health Butterworth is a Level One Trauma Center and provides radiology residents with the majority of their Emergency radiology exposure.

Spectrum Health Blodgett’s Diagnostic Radiology Department performs an average of 134,000 diagnostic exams per year, including CT and MRI scanning, nuclear medicine with Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) camera, angiography, and ultrasound. Residents complete the majority of their fluoroscopy experience at Blodgett, where there is a substantial bariatric surgery population.

Mercy Health Saint Mary Health Care’s board-certified radiologists provide resident training in interventional radiology/angiography, CT and MRI scanning, nuclear medicine, mammography, ultrasound and general radiology. Mercy Health Saint Mary’s is the West Michigan Renal Transplant Center, and provides residents with exposure to a variety of renal failure-related radiological studies. They also opened the region’s first diagnostic Breast Center in 1983, which is the site where residents complete the majority of their mammography rotations.  The Lacks Cancer Center at Mercy Health Saint Mary’s is a comprehensive, dedicated cancer hospital.

Equipment: All hospitals are equipped with a recently updated version of McKesson PACS.  Ergonomic workstations are provided for all residents.

Spectrum Health Butterworth

  • 13 ultrasound units
  • 4 multi-slice CT’s (64- and 16-slice included)
  • 2 1.5-T MRI units
  • 1 3-T MRI unit
  • 5 fluoroscopy rooms (one remote)
  • 3 angiography suites (including bi-planar for neurointerventional)
  • 4 gamma cameras
  • 7 digital radiography units
  • PET/CT
  • MR Unit in the OR

Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital

  • 5 ultrasound units
  • 2 multi-slice CT’s (16 slice included)
  • 1 1.5-T MRI unit
  • 4 fluoroscopy rooms (2 remote)
  • 3 digital radiography units
  • 3 angiography suites (1 biplane for neurointerventional)
  • 3 gamma cameras
  • 64-slice CT, bariatric 16-slice CT, SPECT/CT

Mercy Health Saint Mary’s

  • 2 multislice CT’s (64 slice included)
  • 1 1.5-T MRI units
  • 1 3-T MRI unit
  • 4 ultrasound units
  • 2 angiography suites (bi-plane included)
  • 4 fluoroscopy rooms
  • digital mammography units
  • 2 radiography units (CR)
  • 3 gamma cameras

Program Focus/Curriculum

Educational Opportunities: Conferences are held throughout the academic year. There is an average of 9-10 hours of conferences per week. The core curriculum includes: physics, didactic subspecialty lectures and interactive case conferences. The core curriculum for each section covers all aspects of diagnostic and interventional radiology, repeated twice over the resident’s four years. Daily didactic lectures and/or interactive conferences are provided. Physics lectures are given each Tuesday by department physicists and provide the necessary foundation to understand the underlying imaging science for each diagnostic modality and prepare residents for the physics, regulatory and quality questions they will encounter for their certifying exam and in practice. Our medical physics faculty also teaches a curriculum which incorporates NRC requirements so that all of our residents qualify for authorized user status (please see the American Board of Radiology’s website for details regarding NRC authorized user status).

In addition to clinical radiology and physics lectures, dedicated lectures or course series are provided in: the radiology report, business concepts, quality and patient safety and ethics as they pertain to the practice of radiology.

A dedicated didactic-based curriculum to prepare PGY2 residents for night float runs for six months prior to the resident beginning night float.

Resident run Brant and Helms Conference is held each Tuesday morning to provide introduction to the fundamentals of diagnostic radiology to freshman residents.

Additionally, residents are encouraged to attend and participate in a variety of divisional, departmental and interdepartmental conferences in conjunction with their clinical counterparts, including various specialty tumor boards.    Senior residents have the potential to present at these conferences further preparing them for the rigors of fellowship.

Residents also have a resident run interdisciplinary conference where they teach other clinical residents the pathophysiology relating to their patients, normal/abnormal anatomy, and what are the appropriate imaging tests.

Journal Club is held monthly with faculty member facilitator to discuss interesting articles on a topic of the residents’ interest.

Grand Rounds followed by Resident Education Conference are typically provided 1-2 times per month from a visiting radiologist who is nationally and internationally recognized in their area of expertise.

Meetings & Courses: All diagnostic radiology residents attend the 4-week radiologic pathology course at the American Institute for Radiologic Pathology (AIRP) in Silver Spring, MD during their PGY-4 year in which registration and lodging are paid for by the program.

Additional funds are provided during the resident’s third year to specifically be used for a radiology review course for the ABR Core Exam.

Residents present their research at major national meetings including RSNA, ARRS, ASNR, and AUR. Residents are also encouraged to present their work at subspecialty meetings. Our program provides financial support for residents to attend any meeting at which the resident is the primary presenter of an oral presentation or educational exhibit.


Body CT/MR
Emergency Radiology/Night Float
Elective (e.g. senior mini-fellowships)
Nuclear Medicine

Research & Teaching Opportunities

Research Opportunities: During radiology residency at Spectrum Health, there are ample research opportunities. Our close affiliation with the Michigan State University-College of Human Medicine allows us to take advantages of the many resources Michigan State MSU-CHM has to offer.  In fact, a new MSU Research Center capable of supporting 44 research teams of various areas of disease located blocks away from the hospital will be opening in late 2017.  Our high volume lends itself for abundant opportunities for case reports and/or case series studies.  Alternately, those who are more academically orientated may join with one of our faculty, many of which have nationally published articles.  Residents are provided with two weeks elective time per year during their third and fourth years. Our GME Research Department provides support to residents and faculty in all areas of research and scholarly activity.

Residents present their research at major national meetings including RSNA, ARRS, ASNR, and AUR. Residents are also encouraged to present their work at subspecialty meetings. Our program provides financial support for residents to attend any meeting at which the resident is the primary presenter of an oral presentation or educational exhibit.

The GME Research Department provides support to Spectrum Health residents and faculty in all areas of research and scholarly activity (e.g., quality, educational, surveys).  To access more details, including templates (e.g., study protocol, poster), help request forms and other contact information, visit Spectrum Health GME Research.

Teaching Opportunities: In keeping with the tradition of physician as teacher, residents have many opportunities to teach their colleagues, medical students and patients.  The radiology residents teach medical students the pertinent radiographic and CT findings (normal and abnormal) anatomy during their first year.  The residents also teach each other through weekly conferences such as Brant and Helms Rounds.  In addition, the residents participate in a resident-run interdisciplinary conference in which they teach the clinical residents their patient’s pathological imaging findings.

Opportunities Within The Radiology Community: Our residents are active in the politics of the greater radiology community, both locally as part of the Michigan Radiological Society and nationally through the ACR. Residents attend the annual Michigan Radiological Society Meeting.  Also, in the past we have had residents selected to attend the AUR Radiology Resident Academic Leadership Development (ARRALD) Program introducing them to topics such as radiology leadership, policy, and economics. Residents also participate in Michigan Legislative Day, where they visit with Michigan law makers directly to talk about ACR sponsored initiatives.

Call Responsibility

Radiology resident in-house call begins in May of the PGY-2 year, with residents stationed in-house at Spectrum Butterworth Hospital.  After hours radiology studies at Mercy Healthy St. Mary’s Hospital are remotely interpreted by the resident at the Butterworth Hospital. In-house call involves a night-float system with the majority of call front-loaded into the 2nd year of residency so that residents can develop early expertise and confidence with independent interpretative responsibility.  All in-house residents have continuous expert backup by attendings that are available at all hours for consultation. There is an additional home call pool in which residents are available by pager to cover emergency interventional and fluoroscopic procedures.  There is no extended call and all residents have 5pm-10pm off except when they are on home call.  Call frequency decreases during the PGY-4 and PGY-5 years and the immediate period leading up to the CORE exam is call free.

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