Postgraduate musculoskeletal fellowship training in the United States: Current trends and future direction

Thomas H. Berquist, L. W. Bancroft, M. J. Kransdorf, J. J. Peterson, M. R. Anderson, R. M. Walters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: To document current postgraduate musculoskeletal training program (accredited and unaccredited) curricula and approaches to education. Design and patients: Questionnaires were sent to all musculoskeletal training programs. Responses regarding radiology residency and fellowship program sizes, types of imaging and invasive procedures included, and other program parameters were solicited. Features of accredited and unaccredited programs were compared. Teaching approaches, including the use of web-based or distance learning were evaluated. Results: Twenty-nine (73%) of 40 musculoskeletal programs responded to the questionnaire. Twenty-eight percent of programs were accredited and 72% unaccredited. Radiology residencies were also present at all responding institutions (the majority had a class size of 4-8/year). Residency programs in related specialties included pathology 96%, orthopedics and rheumatology 90%, oncology 83% and pain management 69%. The majority (93-100%) provided training in radiography, MRI and CT. Spine MRI was included in 69% of programs, ultrasonography in 62% and positron emission tomography in 24%. Arthrography and diagnostic and therapeutic injections (100%) were included in all programs. Other invasive procedures, including spine and radiofrequency ablation, were offered less frequently. Teaching approaches included conferences (100%), journal clubs (62%), multidisciplinary conferences (45-90%), web-based learning (30%) and distance learning (7%). Forty-one percent of programs offered off-site rotations. Conclusions: The majority of musculoskeletal training programs prepared trainees for private or academic practice. There are inconsistencies that could be improved to better prepare trainees for careers in musculoskeletal imaging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)337-342
Number of pages6
JournalSkeletal Radiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2003


  • Accredited
  • Interdisciplinary
  • Invasive procedures
  • Journal clubs
  • Unaccredited
  • Web-based learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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