Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging

Nuclear Medicine Radionuclide Therapy for Radiology

Nuclear Medicine & Molecular Imaging is a section within the Department of Diagnostic Radiology that uses small amounts of radioactive materials to either image the function of organs or systems within the body or to treat disease. Our clinical mission is to provide advanced, high-quality, safe, and comfortable radionuclide-based imaging and therapy for all our patients. In addition, our academic mission is to teach the next generations of physicians with expertise in this field, as well perform research from the bench to the bedside.

Very small and safe amounts of gamma or positron emitting radiopharmaceuticals are used to image a variety of processes within the body including cancer, heart disease, infection, and so on, using molecular targeting resulting in functional imaging. These unique images provide information not obtained by other imaging modalities in Radiology and are very sensitive. The emitted radiation is used to create an image using gamma cameras (including Single-Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT)) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET). Our section has three SPECT scanners, two with CT capabilities as well, and two PET/CT scanners. Meet the  Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging physician team. We're expanding!

Patients should visit our clinical page.

Routine and Advanced Imaging services provided

Diagnostic Radiology GE SIGNA PET/ MRI scanner
New PET/MRI scanner coming this fall!

Bone Scan | Hepatobiliary Scan | Brain Scan for epilepsy, Parkinson’s | Brain scan to determine Brain Death | Gastric Emptying Studies | Gastric Emptying Studies | Lymphatic Mapping Studies | Lung Vent/ Perf | GI Bleed Scans | Cardiac Stress Tests | Renal Function Scans | Thyroid Uptake and Scan | MIBG Scans | Y-90 workup scans | I-131 post-therapy scans | Lutathera post therapy scans | Urea Breath Test | Blood GFR | Blood Volume | Dosimetry

Pet Imaging: PSMA PET/CT | NaF Bone Scan | FDG PET Brain for Epilepsy | FDG PET Brain for Tumor | FDG PET for Infection | FDG PET for Oncology | FDG PET for Cardiac Sarcoid | FDG PET for Cardiac Viability | 68Ga-DOTATATE for NET | 118F-FACBC (Axumin) for Prostate | Amyloid Brain | Tau Brain | 89Zr for Lymphoma

NM Therapy: I-131 therapy for Thyroid Cancer | I-131 therapy for Hyperthyroidism | 223Ra (Xofigo) for Prostate Cancer | Y-90 Tositumomab (Zevalin) for Lymphoma | Y-90 Sirsphere/ Therasphere | 177Lu-DOTATATE (Lutathera) for NET | I-131 MIBG (Azedra) for NET

Therapy

Nuclear Medicine Whole body scan- Radiology

Other radiopharmaceuticals which emit alpha or beta-minus radiation are used to treat a variety of different cancers as well as benign disease of the thyroid gland. The same molecular targeting is used to deliver radiation preferentially to the cells of interest, with limited toxicity to normal organs. We perform all FDA-approved radionuclide therapies including I-131 for hyperthyroidism and thyroid cancer, Y90-ibritumomab for lymphoma, Ra223 for prostate cancer, Lu177-DOTATATE for neuroendocrine tumors, and I-131 mIBG for pheochromocytoma and paragangliomas. We also support the Dotter Department of Interventional Radiology for Selective Internal Radiation Therapy (SIRT) with Y90 spheres.

Theranostics Program

The combination of therapy and diagnostics done with a pair of radiopharmaceuticals is termed Theranostics. This has revitalized the field of Nuclear Medicine and is critical to the concept of precision or personalized medicine. The imaging serves as a non-invasive biomarker (or companion diagnostic) helping guide which patients should be treated with a specific therapy and allowing for monitoring after therapy. Our section has established a comprehensive Theranostics Program to enable further development of this important field. A major part of this program is the Center for Radiochemistry Research at OHSU.

Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Tech in the hot lab

Residency/ Fellowship

The Nuclear Medicine Residency/Fellowship is an ACGME accredited program that can require 1, 2 or 3 years commitment. Our program offers a well-balanced training encompassing general nuclear medicine, PET imaging, and targeted radioisotope therapies, for both adult and pediatric populations. Our academic goal is to train clinically competent Nuclear Radiologists/Nuclear Medicine physicians with a high level of expertise, including those who are interested in academic medicine and/or wish to be leaders in the field.

Nuclear Medicine Physician, Nadine Mallak discussing images on a PACS monitor with a colleague.

During the course of the residency/fellowship, the trainee will become experienced in planning and interpreting basic and advanced diagnostic scans. Diagnostic modalities include planar and hybrid imaging: SPECT/CT, PET/CT, and, starting 2022, PET/MRI. Additionally, the trainee will acquire expertise in planning and performing most FDA-approved targeted radioisotope therapies including low and high-dose radioactive iodine and parenteral therapies such as Ra223 for osseous metastases, Lu177-DOTATATE for neuroendocrine tumors, I-131 mIBG for pheochromocytoma and paragangliomas, and Lu177-PSMA for prostate cancer. The training also includes didactic and laboratory hours focused on physics, instrumentation, safe handling of radioactive materials, and radiobiology. Trainees are strongly encouraged to participate in research activities. Significant research opportunities are available, with adequate mentorship, ample resources, and the possibility of providing dedicated research time to eligible trainees. Gradual autonomy and responsibility will be granted to the trainee in protocolling and interpreting studies during the course of the training period, with expected active involvement in educational activities, and in interdepartmental conferences.

OHSU GME Banner Image - Resized

Candidate eligibility and duration of training

Candidates are expected to satisfy the requirements needed to be eligible for the ABNM certifying examination:

  • Physicians who have successfully completed 4 years of Diagnostic Radiology residency require one additional year for a total of 16 months of Nuclear Medicine training.
  • Physicians who are certified or eligible to be certified by another member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties, must complete two years of Nuclear Medicine training.
  • Physicians who are not certified or eligible to be certified by another member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties, must complete three years of Nuclear Medicine training.

Visit the American Board of Nuclear Medicine for more information on the training requirements required for the certifying exam.

Portland is a great place to live and work. Endless outdoor recreational activities are easily accessible from the city, with the ocean and mountains being less than 1.5 hours away. Learn more about living in Portland.

IM - Portland and Oregon Collage

Application information

Our program has filled through 2023-2024. Applications for the 2024-2025 year will start being accepted in August 2022.

Candidates for Residency or Fellowship are selected through individual applications, not through the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP). A selection committee reviews all application materials. Applications should be addressed to the program director: Nadine Mallak, MD and completed application packets should be sent to Melissa Reed.

To apply please send:

  • One completed and signed application form
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Personal statement
  • Medical school diploma
  • Photocopy of the Dean's letter from your medical school or ECFMG certificate
  • USMLE Step 1,2,3 scores
  • Three letters of recommendation

If you are trained outside the US and Canada, please send the following (including an accurate and full English translation if applicable, by the institution that issued the original document, or by a qualified individual):

  • One completed and signed application form
  • Curriculum vitae which accounts for all time since medical school
  • Personal statement
  • Medical school diploma
  • Certificates or other documentation of medical training completed outside the United States and Canada
  • Results of medical examinations
    • ECFMG-US or MCC-Canada
    • Medical Examinations
      • USMLE-Steps 1, 2 (CK and CS if applicable) and 3
      • or Comlex-Level 1, 2-CE, 2-PE and 3
      • or NBME
      • or FLEX
  • Medical license(s) to practice in another country, if applicable
  • Three letters of recommendation, including letters of recommendation or evaluations from directors of prior training programs.

Foreign applicants must be legally able to work in the U.S., or eligible to obtain work authorization. Candidates must be eligible for H-1B visas, which includes successful completion of all USMLEs.  Initial and extension J-1 Visas are considered in rare circumstances.

We are unable to support J-1 applicants that require a Conrad J-1 waiver in order to be eligible for an H-1B visa. All visa applicants must have successfully passed all USMLE steps at least 6 months prior to fellowship start as USMLEs are required for visa applications.  LMCC exams are not accepted for H-1B applications.

For additional information or questions, please contact Melissa Reed.