The Radiological Sciences Group provides medical physics expertise in the fields of diagnostic radiology physics, radiation protection, MRI and imaging, lasers and UV.
The staff group is a mix of clinical scientists and clinical technologists. The group is part of an IPEM accredited training centre and hosts clinical scientists and technologists who undertake formalised training in diagnostic radiology physics and radiation protection.
Head of Radiological Sciences Group: Anne Davis
Contact: Medical Physics Dept secretary 02392 286000 ext. 3706
Radiological Sciences Group has responsibility for a wide range of diagnostic X-ray equipment including CT scanners, angiography X-ray systems, mammography units plus digital radiography and dental X-ray equipment. Services provided include commissioning and radiation safety testing, support to clinical users for radiographic optimization, pre-purchase advice for new imaging equipment, patient dosimetry audit and dose calculation.
The group currently works for imaging departments in the Portsmouth and Basingstoke areas, several breast screening centres in Hampshire, community dental services and a variety of other centres which use X-rays for imaging.
Under a formally accredited Radiation Protection Advisor, the group provides advice to a range of departments and clinical staff who use ionising radiation in a medical environment. These include X-ray departments, community dental practices, nuclear medicine departments and other healthcare professionals. Primary objectives are to ensure compliance across the breath of legislation which governs the use of ionising radiation. Expertise exists across a wide range of areas including radiation risk assessments, the planning of new radiation facilities, personnel dosimetry, radiation emergency planning, critical examinations and audit of radiation services to ensure compliance with ionising radiation regulations. Teaching and training on radiation protection and safety is also undertaken.
The Radiological Sciences Group undertakes performance testing of UV treatment systems and provides advice on safety and staff protection. For laser systems used for medical purposes the group can advise on the suitability of new facilities for laser use; support the development of safety procedures and documentation; provide training to users on laser safety.
In Queen Alexandra Hospital there are two 1.5 Tesla (Siemens Symphony and GE Discovery 450w) and one 3 Tesla (GE Discovery 750w) MR scanners currently used for clinical investigation. Medical Physics department provides numerous services related to MRI
Quarterly tests are performed on three different MRI scanners in Queen Alexandra Hospital to ensure the quality of the imaging systems is within tolerances suggested by acceptance, manufacturer and MHRA reports. Support is provided to ensure problems are resolved. QA quarterly tests and MRI safety advice is also provided to other three scanners (Philips and Siemens) in other regional hospitals.
Annual safety audit and monthly checks are performed in all the MRI sites to ensure that safety and environmental conditions comply with the MHRA guidelines. Suggestions are provided to improve these conditions when required.
Several research projects are currently on going in collaboration with other Medical Physics sections (Radiotherapy Physics and Nuclear Medicine Physics), with other Portsmouth Hospitals imaging department, and with the Institute of Cancer Research at RoyalMarsden Hospital. These projects are focused on areas and subjects as selection of the optimal contrast agent solution on the basis of the image quality, Bayesian methods for Rician noise reduction, Image Fusion, Diffusion Weighted Imaging, QA optimization techniques, metallosis detection in MRI images, Fast Spoiled GE Sequence optimization for PD image extraction. The common target of these research is the optimization of the MRI image sequences in terms of quality, efficiency and significance. Since 2007 the group has organised and hosted the annual meeting of the South Coast Magnetic Resonance Physicists Group.
Radiological Sciences Group provides IPEM accredited professional training for clinical scientists and technologists in diagnostic radiology and radiation protection.
The group also periodically runs the following training courses :
• Radiation Protection Supervisors courses.
• FRCR training as part of a consortium with Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust.
• IRMER training courses for non-medically qualified referrers for X-ray examinations.
• Training to radiographers on X-ray quality assurance.
• Laser safety training courses.
• Radiation Protection training for health professionals in dentistry
Many of these are provided for the employees of local NHS trusts but may be available for other professionals to attend. Contact the Head of Radiological Sciences Group for further information.