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RSNA 2017 Conference and Utah Reception

By Michael Mozdy


Irfanulla Haider, MD, MBA, University Utah Radiology Fellow alumnus, presenting at the 2017 RSNA Conference about work done here in Utah.


The Radiologic Society of North America (RSNA) held its 103rd Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting at the vast McCormick Place in Chicago from November 26 - December 2, 2017. One of the largest conferences in any field of medicine, the RSNA meeting is a place for new technology to be demonstrated, hot topics to be debated, and research to be unveiled. The 55,000 attendees are treated to many days of talks, digital posters, and panels in every conceivable aspect of radiologic science and clinical practice.

The buzz of this year’s conference was using deep learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to help radiologists with their work load. Some models demonstrate an impressive rate of detection, such as CheXNet which finds 14 medical conditions on chest x-rays. Another big topic was 3D visualization for pre-surgical planning.

University of Utah Radiology and Imaging Sciences sent 32 faculty and staff to attend the 2017 RSNA conference, and their experiences demonstrate the range of important topics at the event. A number of our faculty presented as speakers and entered educational exhibits, including seven prize winning entries (1 magna cum laude, 5 cum laude, 1 certificate of merit) and three potential submissions for scientific publication. Below are the highlights of the conference in the words of our attendees.



Auffermann-square-web.jpgWilliam Auffermann, MD, PhD, Cardiothoracic Imaging

“The advances in machine learning displayed at RSNA were quite amazing.  There are products being marketed that would have existed only in the realm of science fiction as little as 5 years ago.”

kennedy-square-web.jpgAnne Kennedy, MBBCh, Abdominal Imaging

“The most valuable thing for me is meeting and collaborating with colleagues around the country (and the world) – exchanging ideas and learning from each other. Also, renewing my enthusiasm for what a great field we work in. Sometimes the daily grind is so crushing that we lose sight of how much will change patient care; and what a difference we can make.”


Yoshimi Anzai, MD, Neuroradiology

“AI is such a new topic, so people are still figuring out what it can do and how we can use the technology for our profession. I noticed advances in structured reporting, LI-RADS, PI-RADS, and TI-RADS along with new NI-RADS, as well as adding more clarity on the radiology report – this has been discussed in the past but now it is becoming a reality. Finally, incorporating genetic and molecular information into a radiology diagnosis.”


Matthew Morgan, MD, Breast Imaging

“The best parts of RSNA are (re)connecting with colleagues, feeling ‘the pulse’ of medical imaging, and seeing the innovative work happening around the world. This year a lot of the buzz was about machine learning.”


Paula Woodward, MD, Abdominal Imaging

"My favorite thing is always the educational exhibits. Utah really rocked it this year with both the Breast and OB Cases of the Day AND multiple award winning exhibits."




Dennis Parker, PhD, MRI Physics

“I have attended RSNA many years since 1979, and while it’s huge and a bit overwhelming from a distance, I think it’s great for relationship building. Apart from maintaining relationships with our Siemens and Insightec partners, I randomly ran into many people: I sat on the bus next to Robert Krieg, Vice President of Siemens MRI; I met Vincent Dousset, Director of Translational Research and Advanced Imaging at the University of Bordeaux, just outside a plenary talk; in the long hallway I discussed putting forward an FDA proposal with an ultrasound scientist from the University of Michigan; in the commercial exhibit I ran into an old friend, Diego Martin, Chair of Radiology at the University of Arizona who is interested in collaborating; and I encountered many other colleagues and former students.”


Lei “Jeff” Zhang, PhD, MRI Physics

“RSNA is one good place where you would find radiologists who want to do research, and also PhDs who want to do translational research. Machine learning was everywhere this year. It’s also great place to meet old and new friends, and even to talk to our own colleagues. I met one old friend who will help us with our image segmentation, a new friend who does peripheral nerve imaging, and in a committee meeting, talked to Akram Shaaban (our body radiologist) for the first time."




Kirk Mosher, Department Financial Administrator

“RSNA is quite different from a business perspective.  I spend about half my time reviewing vendors’ latest technological advancements, the rest of the time I’m in business meetings discussing potential collaborations and opportunities. I make it a point to meet with all the major vendors, and also set aside a few hours to cruise the floor to see if any vendor has something we need or is unique. Overall though, it’s a great opportunity to refresh crucial business relationships and strategize for the future.”


Lisa Bakhsheshy, Department Clinical Administrator

“I enjoyed visiting with present and former colleagues in a social setting that promotes camaraderie and a sense of being on a team.”



Minoshima-square-web.jpgSatoshi Minoshima, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair

“Great to see so many presentations and contributions from our department at the RSNA annual meeting.  The field is moving robustly with new technologies and applications of imaging and intervention in many medical conditions.  We would like to support our faculty efforts towards better patient care and biomedical discoveries through innovations.  Congratulations to all!”




Scott Parker, MD, Breast/Women’s Imaging Fellow

“To me, the most enjoyable part of every job I've had has been the people I've worked with.  It is sad that roles change and people move on but that is part of life.  So this reunion is particularly enjoyable/valuable for me because I enjoy socializing and chatting with friends I haven't seen for a long time.  It is also nice to hear about different practice styles and consider ideas from others that might help your own practice.”


Patrick Kobes, DO, MSK Fellow

“At the Utah RSNA Reception, I enjoyed meeting members of the department in a relaxed atmosphere.”


Our department also held its annual Utah RSNA Reception at the beautiful and historic Palmer House Hotel. We were joined by many friends, faculty, and alumni and immensely enjoyed our time socializing. Below are some photos from the event.