Current status of radiology training in otolaryngology residency programs

Kirkland N. Lozada, Joseph M. Bernstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


IMPORTANCE: Otolaryngologists use head and neck imaging on a daily basis. However, little is known about the training residents receive on the subject. Understanding the current training environment is important to identify areas of improvement for resident education. OBJECTIVE: To assess the current state of radiology training in otolaryngology residency programs. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This was a cross-sectional survey of 106 otolaryngology residency program directors involving multiple academic institutions. MAINOUTCOMES ANDMEASURES: The main outcomeofthis studyisthe number of US otolaryngology residency programs that have a radiology curriculum. Measured outcomes were obtained from an anonymous online survey and reported as a percent of total respondents. RESULTS: Program directors from 39 of 106 (37%) US otolaryngology residency training programs responded to the survey. Twenty-eight of 39 (71%) have a focused radiology curriculum; 18 of 28 (64%) conduct sessions on a monthly basis, 8 of 28 (29%) on a quarterly basis, and 2 of 28(7%) on aweekly basis. The predominant format (20 of 27programs [74%]) is a mix of case-based review of inpatient studies and standard lectures. The largest proportion of sessions were run by radiologists (13 of 28 [46%]), with a mix of radiology and otolaryngologists close behind (11 of 28 [39%]). Twenty-two of 39 residency programs (56%) have a dedicated radiology rotation within their educational curriculum, of which 17 of 22 (77%) occur in postgraduate year 1 (PGY-1) of training, 3 of 22 (14%) in PGY-3, and 2 of 22 (9%)in PGY-4. Rotation lengths range from 1week to 3months, with most running 1to 4 weeks. Thirty-two of 38 of US program directors (84%) believe that a formal radiology curriculum would benefit their residents. Thirty-five of 39 believe that this should be a case-based review of images. Twenty-four of 38 believe this should be done on a monthly basis. Fifteen of 39 responding program directors (39%) believe the optimal time is during the PGY-3 of training, 36% (14 of 38) favor the PGY-2, and 23% (9 of 38) in PGY-1. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Despite no standardized requirements from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), 71% of US otolaryngology residency program directors who responded to our survey have a radiology curriculum. Most run didactics sessions at the desired frequency, setting, and format preferred by responding program directors. More than half of programs provide a dedicated radiology rotation, mostly during PGY-1, while identifying PGY-2 and PGY-3 as the optimal time for such an experience. These results highlight the need for a more thorough review of radiology education requirements from the ACGME to improve the training of otolaryngology residents across the country.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)218-221
Number of pages4
JournalJAMA Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


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