Nuclear Medicine Technologists administer and monitor radioactive material to help detect and stop diseases in their early stages. With small amounts of radioactive drugs and special cameras used to track signals from the human body, these technologists compile images that reveal the characteristics and functions of tissues and inner organs. These tests allow physicians to detect abnormalities within a patient and make a diagnosis.
Nuclear medicine technology programs last one to four years, with hospitals offering certificates, community colleges offering associate degrees and four-year colleges and universities offering bachelor’s degrees. The one-year programs are designed for those who are already health professionals, such as radiologic technicians, and wish to specialize. Graduates can take the voluntary certification examination administered by Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board or the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.