Jobs in Radiology

X-ray Technician: What to Expect

So you are thinking of a career as an X-ray technician. This could very well be a promising path for you to take.

Many states have bright employment prospects for X-ray technicians and for radiology professionals in general, especially in places where there are higher numbers of seniors and patients needing medical care and diagnostic imaging.

What kind of career awaits you as an X-ray technician these days?

What You Will Be Doing

X-ray Technician: What to Expect - How to Become a RadiologistYour main job will be to procure images of a person’s body in order to see and diagnose various medical conditions.

Using modern imaging equipment, the images you take will provide physicians and radiologists with the necessary test results to base their medical findings on and to lay out a plan for treatment.

This makes the role of the X-ray technician extremely important, and training for this position is anything but simple.

What You Will Need To Learn

The X-ray technician-to-be will have to learn medical terminology and concepts during training. Even though you may not be directly involved in the treatment of diseases or conditions, you do have to be familiar with them, as a working knowledge of the different conditions will make you more effective and insightful in your role.

The most important part of the training of the X-ray technician is learning how to operate the imaging equipment, something which he or she will have to operate on a daily basis once out of training and performing actual work. X-ray equipment can be either stationed or portable, and the X-ray technician will need to learn how to operate both efficiently.

Interpersonal Skills Required

Another part of your training is knowing how to put the patients at ease and make them as comfortable as possible during the examination. Many people have apprehensions regarding medical procedures.

Part of the X-ray technician’s responsibilities may include explaining to the patient what needs to be done to correctly perform the test, and how to position them correctly to get the right images. Some patients may also need appropriate adjustments or considerations with regard to physical limitations or mobility issues.

Safety First

Safety precautions are also part of the X-ray technician’s duties, and this is taught during training. The goal is to minimize radiation exposure to as little as possible.

Lead sheets, protective clothing, and other blocking devices are utilized in order to minimize the exposure to X-rays. The X-ray technician must see to it that the patient is adequately protected, and during training this is taught and practiced.

Opportunities Await

X-ray technicians are in demand in many parts of the country because of the growing medical care industry and the many treatments and equipment the require their expertise. One of the biggest advantages of the X-ray technician is the fact that they need less years of education and training in order to be able to find employment.

Many two-year vocational courses and programs allow an X-ray technician to find gainful employment in hospitals, doctor’s clinics, radiology clinics, dental offices, and other places.

The average salary of an X-ray technician starts at around $45,000 annually, and many X-ray technicians command salaries of up to $55,000. Also, as you begin to work as an X-ray technician you can choose to continue your education and make yourself more competitive.