Amsterdam UMC Imaging Center

Radiology & Nuclear Medicine

Diagnosis, image-guided therapy and related research

The Radiology and Nuclear Medicine specialism encompasses both imaging diagnostics (anatomical, physiological, biochemical and molecular) and image-guided therapy (vascular and non-vascular interventional radiology, image-guided chemo/immunotherapy and radionuclide therapy). Our department specializes in diagnosis, image-guided therapy and related research in the oncologic, neurologic, cardiovascular, immunologic, interventional and cardiothoracic domains.

Within a multidisciplinary setting an array of conventional and advanced techniques and methods is used, among others:

  1. X-rays (e.g. CT)
  2. magnetic resonance (MRI),
  3. ultrasound reflection (US),
  4. conventional gamma rays (SPECT),
  5. positron emission (PET),
  6. and combinations like (Whole Body) PET-CT

Next generation applications

In addition to the conventional imaging techniques, each imaging modality has next-generation applications that can be regarded as “advanced imaging”, e.g. in case of MRI there is high-field MRI, MR spectroscopy, perfusion imaging, diffusion-weighted imaging, blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) imaging, as well as the more experimental molecular imaging. ‘Advanced imaging” is especially applied at the academic centers like Amsterdam University Medical Center, and aims to get clinically relevant anatomical, physiological or molecular information from an imaging examination.

Availability of the best scanners and expertise is a must for this specialism.

Patient care and training

Patient care and training are divided into sub-specialisms, in line with the revised education program. In 2015 the medical specialist trainings in The Netherlands merged and a framework decision was made for the integration of the training programs in radiology and nuclear medicine. Sub-specialisms comprise neuro-imaging, including head and neck; musculoskeletal imaging, cardiothoracic imaging, abdominal imaging, breast imaging, pediatric imaging, interventional radiology and molecular radiology. In addition, there is a training program for radiology technicians and clinical physicists in the imaging domain.

This is the heart of the operation. Half of the building is designated for patient care. The other half comprises research labs that support patient care and pave the way to future care.

Next to this, the specialism is involved in signal recognition, signal description,  image processing and artificial intelligence in all its aspects, in which objectivity, quantification and efficient processing and interpretation of signals are focus areas. There is a renewed attention for “radiomics”, in which large amounts of quantitative information obtained from several types of already available images are analyzed for in depth characterization of diseases. We set these world-standards in the quantification of images.

Availability of state-of-the-art infrastructure is a must for medical imaging. This includes high-end diagnostic imaging and interventional systems as well as radiochemistry laboratories and pre-clinical scanners and auxiliary lab facilities.