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Medical Physics - Medical

Medical physics is the application of physics to medicine. It generally concerns physics as applied to medical imaging and radiotherapy, although a medical physicist may also work in many other areas of healthcare. A medical physics department may be based in either a hospital or a university and its work is likely to include research, technical development, and clinical healthcare.

Of the large body of medical physicists in academia and clinics, roughly 85% practice or specialize in various forms of therapy, 10% in diagnostic imaging, and 5% in nuclear medicine. Areas of specialty in medical physics however are widely varied in scope and breadth.

Areas of Speciality:

  • Diagnostic radiology, including x-rays, fluoroscopy, mammography, dual energy X-ray absorptiometry, angiography and computed tomography
  • Ultrasound, including intravascular ultrasound
  • Non-ionizing radiation (Lasers, Ultraviolet etc.)
  • Nuclear medicine, including single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and positron emission tomography (PET)
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and other methods for functional neuroimaging of the brain.
  • For example, nuclear magnetic resonance (often referred to as magnetic resonance imaging to avoid the common concerns about radiation), uses the phenomenon of nuclear resonance to image the human body.
  • Magneto encephalography
  • Electrical impedance tomography
  • Diffuse optical imaging
  • Optical coherence tomography

Treatment of disease

  • Defibrillation
  • Treatment of disease
  • High intensity focused ultrasound, including lithotripsy
  • Interventional radiology
  • Non-ionizing radiation Lasers, Ultraviolet etc. including photodynamic therapy and Lasik
  • Nuclear medicine, including unsealed source radiotherapy
  • Photo medicine, the use of light to treat and diagnose disease
  • Radiotherapy
  • Tom Therapy
  • Cyberknife
  • Gamma knife
  • Proton therapy
  • Brach therapy
  • Boron Neutron Capture Therapy
  • Sealed source radiotherapy

Physiological measurement techniques

Used to monitor and measure various physiological parameters. Many physiological measurement techniques are non-invasive and can be used in conjunction with, or as an alternative to, other invasive methods.

  • Electrocardiography
  • electric current
  • Electromyography
  • Electroencephalography
  • Electronystagmography
  • Endoscopy
  • Medical ultrasonography
  • Non-ionizing radiation (Lasers, Ultraviolet etc.)
  • Near infrared spectroscopy
  • Pulse oximetry
  • Blood gas monitor
  • Blood pressure measurement

Radiation protection

  • Background radiation
  • Radiation protection
  • Dosimetry
  • Health Physics
  • Radiological Protection of Patients

Medical computing and mathematics

  • Medical informatics
  • Telemedicine
  • Picture archiving and communication systems (PACS)
  • Tomographic reconstruction, an ill-posed inverse problem.