British Nuclear Medicine Society Conference - Oxford, April 2019

I've not been to a conference before. Come to think of it I've never presented an academic poster before as well. Two birds, one stone.

A large contingent of staff from Maidstone Nuclear Medicine department went to the BNMS conference in Oxford. The group included fellow radiographers, nuclear medicine technologists, medical physicists and a radiologist. It was quite remarkable, we all got into the spirit and submitted numerous abstracts for posters and presentations, and then we all had our submissions accepted! Thankfully the department needed some planned maintenance and no patients suffered undue delay by our absence. I have been writing a case report about some Nuclear Medicine physics for some time now, ever since doing my PgCert in Nuclear Medicine. The other staff convinced me to submit it as a poster first, before sending it off to the Radiography Journal. I couldn't quite figure out why, but essentially you can then get your name in print twice - once for the poster and once for the article. All a bit bizarre, but here I am with the poster after winning a Merit! -

Whilst not related to paleoimaging, or paleoradiology for that matter, it was a fantastic experience to prepare and present a poster at conference. The talks were very interesting and informative, giving the team the enthusiasm and confidence to think about our own research ideas back in the hospital. Nuclear Medicine, as you all know, involves the administration of a radioactive substance to a patient (normally by intravenous routes) and then measuring the radiation. Each radiopharmaceutical (radio = radioactive, pharmaceutical = drug) is tailored to a different organ or process, therefore each specific exam/procedure assesses the physiological process of different parts of the body. Nuclear Medicine uses a gamma camera to detect the gamma rays, it is closely related to PET imaging - Positron Emission Tomography.

The only link to paleoradiology is that of the following article:

Yatsishina, E. B., Kovalchuk, M. V., Loshak, M. D., Vasilyev, S. V., Vasilieva, O. A., Dyuzheva, O. P., Pojidaev, V. M. and Ushakov, V. L. (2018) ‘Interdisciplinary Study of Egyptian Mummies from the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts Collection at the National Research Centre “Kurchatov Institute”’, Crystallography Reports, 63(3), pp. 518-529.

Within it, they state they use a PET / CT scanner, with CT meaning computed tomography (aka the 'CAT' scan of Americans). I'd say this is somewhat misleading, as the imaging of these mummies did not use the PET / CT scanner in the true sense (i.e. with both parts of the machine) as they decidedly did not inject the mummies with radioactive materials! I must also say that the article was quite boastful of Russia, not overly unbiased lets say...

We stayed at the Worcester College, in very expensive accommodation. I was not overly impressed, I knew it was student accommodation but it has been quite a while since I had to endure flakey paint on the walls and mildew. Still, it gave me an insight into what it feels like to be a university student at Oxford.

The grounds were superb, we explored what we could and poked our noses where perhaps we shouldn't. The conference dinner was held in the Medieval Hall at New College, the same place they filmed Harry Potter (not that I care much). A jovial affair, plenty to eat and drink, lots of awards handed out and boring speeches. There was a paid-for night club afterwards - whoop whoop!

I was in bed by midnight.

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