What Does a Non-Invasive Vascular Technologist Do?

Investigate the duties and responsibilities of a non-invasive vascular technologist. Read on to learn more about this career, which uses complex imaging technology to diagnose and improve cardiovascular health. Schools offering Cardiovascular Technology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Defined

Non-invasive vascular technology uses sound and imaging techniques to examine a patient's vascular system without making a puncture, insertion, or incision in the body. As a non-invasive vascular technologist, you are trained to use ultrasound and blood pressure cuffs. These machines record images of the body in order to reveal conditions like deep vein thrombosis, heart disease, coronary artery disease, and peripheral vascular disease.

Important Facts About This Career

Required Education Associate's degree or certificate plus healthcare work experience
Licensure/Certification May be required; highly preferred by employers
Key Skills Interpersonal communication, hand-eye coordination, technical skills, attention to detail
Similar Occupations Cardiovascular technologists, diagnostic medical sonographers, radiologic and MRI technologists, nuclear medicine technologists, medical laboratory technologists

Technical Duties

As a non-invasive vascular technologist, your primary responsibility is to operate the machines that produce the ultrasound images. These images not only detect disease but might also be used to monitor blood flow or pressure. They also show the amount of oxygen in the blood and the circulation in various parts of the body, such as the brain, extremities, or abdominal region. Cardiologists use these images to diagnose and manage their patients' cardiovascular conditions.

Patient Care Responsibilities

Though your specialty is working the non-invasive testing equipment, you also might have responsibilities that involve direct care of the cardiovascular patient. For example, you might be called upon to prepare a cardiovascular patient for testing or take a patient's medical history. You might also need to explain testing procedures to patients before or during the procedure or inform the physician if the patient shows any change in response during the testing process.

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov), about 75% of cardiovascular technologists and technicians, including non-invasive vascular technologists, were employed in general hospitals in 2014. However, you might also find employment in diagnostic laboratories, physicians' offices, outpatient care facilities, and diagnostic imaging centers. Your duties will be similar wherever you are employed, though they might vary according to the equipment available in different types of medical facilities. The BLS predicts that the employment of cardiovascular technologists and technicians should grow by about 30% between 2012 and 2022.

The BLS published the median salary earned by cardiovascular technologists and technicians as $54,330 a year in May 2014, noting that techs employed by offices of other health practitioners earned the most money, averaging $72,400 a year.

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  • The George Washington University

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    • Master

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    • Maryland: Towson
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  • Southern New Hampshire University

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  • College of Health Care Professions

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