Radiology training for chiropractic radiologists in the United States of America

Radiology training for chiropractic radiologists in the United States of America includes a minimum of 3 years of residency after obtaining a doctor of chiropractic degree (DC), which is largely focused on musculoskeletal (MSK) radiology. A small number of chiropractic radiologists pursue a one year fellowship after completing a residency program. Less than 400 chiropractors, to date, have been certified as diplomates of the American Chiropractic Board of Radiology (ACBR), making it a relatively small field of study.

The pathway currently consists of:

  • Chiropractic degree
    • 300-400 contact hours of radiology coursework including medical physics and interpretation of skeletal, thoracic and abdominal radiographic studies, with an emphasis on the musculoskeletal system
  • PGY 1: radiology training
  • PGY 2: radiology training
  • PGY 3: radiology training
  • PGY 4: optional subspecialty fellowship
    • cross-sectional musculoskeletal imaging
      • ultrasound
      • MRI

The American Chiropractic Board of Radiology requires two exams to become a board-certified chiropractic radiologist:

  • core written exam
  • certifying practical exam

Notable differences in chiropractic radiology training and general medical radiology training is the heavy emphasis on musculoskeletal imaging, with no direct education required for breast imaging or body ultrasound, which are generally out of the scope of chiropractic practice in the current environment. 

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