Nuclear Medicine Certification

Nuclear medicine involves the use of radiation to diagnose and treat various medical conditions. Find out about the training options to qualify you to work in nuclear medicine, and learn what you need to do in order to earn professional certification. Schools offering Diagnostic Medical Sonography degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Nuclear Medicine?

Nuclear medicine uses radionuclides to diagnose diseases. Radionuclides are atoms that spontaneously emit radiation, and when they are further compounded and purified they create radiopharmaceuticals. Radiopharmaceuticals can be administered directly to patients by nuclear medicine technologists; they can then monitor the metabolic changes that take place within the patient.

Key Topics Radiopharmaceuticals, radiation, metabolic changes, radionuclides
Certifying Bodies Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board (NMTCB) and the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT)
Certification Prerequisites Completion of an associate's degree, bachelor's degree, or certificate program focused on topics related to nuclear medicine

What Certifications Are Available?

Nuclear medicine technologists may choose to be certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT), the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board (NMTCB) or both.

American Registry of Radiologic Technologists

The ARRT offers the Nuclear Medicine Technology certification. As of January 1, 2015, all prospective candidates must hold an associate's degree or higher to sit for the exam. This degree does not need to be in radiology and may be earned at any point before taking the exam. Applicants must also complete a nuclear medicine technology training program from the list of accredited organizations recognized by the ARRT. To be eligible for gaining and maintaining certification, you must also agree and adhere to a code of ethics. The exam covers five main areas:

  • Patient care and education
  • Instrumentation and quality control
  • Diagnostic and therapeutic procedures
  • Radionuclides and radiopharmaceuticals
  • Radiation protection

Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board

Completion of an accredited certificate or undergraduate degree program, or an NMTCB recognized nuclear medicine program, qualifies you to sit for this exam. Your education must have been completed within the past five years prior to testing. The four areas of testing for this exam are radiation safety, radiopharmacy, instrumentation and clinical procedures.

How Can I Fulfill the Education Requirements?

If you are just starting out, you have the option of enrolling in an associate's or bachelor's degree program in nuclear medicine. Associate's degree programs can usually be finished in two years while bachelor's degree programs take about four years to complete. Both require you to complete some general education classes such as biology, algebra, composition and psychology. You are also required to take classes in your area of focus, such as nuclear medicine instrumentation, radiation physics, radiopharmacy, nuclear cardiology and pathophysiology.

Another option is enrolling in a certificate program, which is usually geared toward those who have already have college experience or have completed some kind of health care training. Classes for certificate programs are similar to those found in degree programs.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Master
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  • The George Washington University

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    • Master

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  • Grand Canyon University

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    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

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  • Herzing University

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  • Regent University

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    Popular programs at Regent University:

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  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master

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  • Indiana Wesleyan University

    Indiana Wesleyan University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Indiana Wesleyan University:

    • Master
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  • Penn Foster High School

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  • Fortis College

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    Popular programs at Fortis College:

    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • Maryland: Towson
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