My Turn: RadioGraphics Celebrates 40 Years

RSNA's premier education journal in diagnostic radiology provides high-quality CME

Olmsted headshot 135.190
Klein Jeffrey md
Menias RG Editor

This year, RadioGraphics celebrates 40 years of providing high-quality RSNA continuing medical education materials to the radiology community worldwide. Since the launch of the journal in May 1981, imaging technology and clinical practice of radiology have evolved, and so have the methods to educate practitioners in their goal to attain the necessary interpretive and noninterpretive skills to optimize their imaging of patients.

RadioGraphics was born when the RSNA Board of Directors and the journal’s inaugural editor, William Tuddenham, MD, envisioned a sister journal to accompany the Society’s flagship journal Radiology. Dr. Tuddenham’s dream for the journal was to “capture…the pictorial appeal and the sharply focused teaching value of selected scientific exhibits” from the Society’s annual meeting. Over the subsequent eight years of Dr. Tuddenham’s tenure as editor, the journal focused on publishing RSNA annual meeting educational materials identified through the RadioGraphics panel review process.

In 1990, as William W. Olmsted, MD, began his 22 years as editor of RadioGraphics, he pledged to build the publication into the premier education journal in diagnostic radiology and instituted many educational initiatives to support this goal. That year, the journal added radiologic-pathologic correlation articles, and in the following year, Edward Staab, MD, began authoring a feature on informatics in radiology. The expansion of published pages and education articles occurred throughout the 1990s, with 64 manuscripts totaling 1,578 pages published in 1998, all based on RSNA annual meeting exhibits or plenary session presentations.

In 1998, RadioGraphics began online publication, and in October 1999, the journal introduced a seventh annual issue as a monograph, in part to help provide space for increasing content. Articles published ahead of print began appearing in 2008, a workflow that is now the norm for the majority of RadioGraphics articles.

While most readers today likely associate the journal with its continuing medical education and exercises available for virtually all full-length review articles, this was not always the case. One of Dr. Olmsted’s early initiatives in 1991 was to offer Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits for articles published in RadioGraphics, making it the first radiology journal to feature a platform offering CME credit for its content.

During the tenure of Jeffrey Klein, MD, as editor from 2012 through 2020, the journal grew to its current offering of 15–17 AMA PRA Category 1 CME credits in each issue, essentially one available for each full-length article. Since 2014, RSNA has awarded nearly 100,000 CME credits annually for RadioGraphics articles.

Perhaps the most dramatic change in the journal in recent years has been the electronic and alternative journal content delivery methods. In addition to the trainee-focused RadioGraphics Fundamentals presentations, the journal now offers online video content embedded within the articles. The RSNA Image Viewer available in each article allows the display and manipulation of figures, with full DICOM capabilities.

As readers look to maximize their efficiency in keeping up to date on radiology education, the journal has offered condensed summaries of journal content using audio and video podcasts. Beginning in 2015, RadioGraphics has provided a series of author interviews for select articles, summary audio review podcasts for each issue, and brief video reviews of highlighted papers. The RadioGraphics Twitter feed (@RadioGraphics) highlights journal content, and the journal recently hosted its first Tweet chat.

In 2019, RadioGraphics’ impact factor reached 4.967, validating the educational value and importance of the journal to all segments of our specialty and medicine.

In 2021, a new leader has taken the helm. The vision of Editor Christine (Cooky) Menias, MD, is to ensure RadioGraphics meets the needs of all our current readers wherever they are by leveraging both conventional and novel digital platforms. Happy 40th Anniversary, RadioGraphics.

For More Information

Access the latest issue of RadioGraphics

Read the milestones in the RadioGraphics 40-year timeline infographic

William W. Olmsted, MD, is a radiologist with the Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Baltimore Veterans Administration Hospital, Baltimore, MD (W.W.O.). He served as editor of RadioGraphics from 1990 to 2012.

Jeffrey S. Klein, MD, is the A. Bradley Soule and John P. Tampas Green and Gold Professor of Radiology at the University of Vermont College of Medicine. He is the RSNA Board liaison for publications and communications and served as editor of RadioGraphics from 2012 to 2021.

Christine (Cooky) O. Menias, MD, is professor of radiology at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science, Arizona, as well as a consultant in the Department of Radiology and chair of the Division of Abdominal Imaging. She is the current editor of RadioGraphics.