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Radiology and Research

Radiology is a key part of the NHS because it is vital for the diagnosis and monitoring of disease. Over the last 10 years there have been rapid advances in radiology/imaging technology, and healthcare including treatment of diseases such as cancer.

Demand for radiological examinations has increased because imaging methods such as x-ray, CT, MRI or ultrasound are able to diagnose an increasing variety of diseases and conditions, as well as being used for monitoring disease and response to treatment.  Due to this, imaging has become an essential part of many research studies.

All clinical trial studies conducted within the trust which involve radiology are processed through the radiology research team, with the support of a medical physics expert. Assessments are made upon the feasibility of the study; the capacity with the radiology department, the radiation doses involved for the patients taking part and the finance/ cost implications for radiology to ensure the research is safe and can be well supported by the department.

A small radiology research team has been established to support clinical trials and research studies requiring radiological support. Across the trust, more and more clinical trials are using imaging as part of the trial protocol and the radiology department currently support around 60 studies, with this number always increasing.  

The Team  

The radiology research team is led by our clinical trials and research specialist radiographer, and comprises of consultant radiologists, radiographers and administrative staff. The radiology department hope to further expand the research team in the future. We work closely with the Trust’s Research and Development Department as a support department to ensure efficient and streamlined processes.

The aim of the radiology research team is to:

  • Contribution to good quality research across the trust
  • Provide timely and accurate RECIST tumour guidelines for oncology studies that require them
  • Improve cohesion and interaction between research and development and radiology, other support departments and stakeholders.
  • Raise awareness of radiology in research
  • Establish infrastructure for research requiring radiology input
  • Expand and maintain research capacity and facilities in imaging
  • Create collaborations across research networks, trusts, research charities and universities
  • In the future to create an experienced research imaging team to help approve and develop research across the trust.

Further information regarding radiology and research:

Radiation dose information

NRPB: X-rays How safe are they? https://www.phe-protectionservices.org.uk/cms/assets/gfx/content/resource_3317cs2c758933af.pdf  

Gov.UK patient dose information https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/medical-radiation-patient-doses/patient-dose-information-guidance