RSNA Member Spotlight: Faezeh Sodagari, MD

Learn more about a fellow RSNA member

Faezeh Sodagari, MD

Faezeh Sodagari, MD, is an assistant professor of radiology in the Department of Radiology at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, and a breast imaging radiologist at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.

Born and raised in Tehran, Iran, where she received her medical training, Dr. Sodagari moved to the U.S. in 2015. She completed a two-year radiology research fellowship at Northwestern University in Chicago and a one-year surgical internship at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, NY. Later, after finishing a four-year residency in diagnostic radiology at Yale New Haven Hospital, Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, CT, Dr. Sodagari completed a breast imaging fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School in Boston, graduating in 2023.

Her research interests include leveraging technology and health services research to improve patient access to high-value breast imaging care and patient safety in radiology.

What or who sparked your interest in radiology?

When I started clinical rotations in medical school in Iran, I was inspired by seeing radiologists discussing imaging findings and diagnoses during morning reports. I was especially impressed by their depth of knowledge and their impact on patient care and clinical decision-making of all other specialties. I always volunteered to take the patients’ outside films to our radiology reading rooms to review with radiologists or accompany patients for imaging. I was mesmerized by complex images and the radiologists’ ability to interpret such complicated tests. During my internship in medical school, instead of going home to sleep after 30-hour calls, I preferred sitting in front of a computer to look at imaging studies performed overnight in the emergency room. By then, I was certain I wanted to become a radiologist and move to the United States for the best radiology training.

Faezeh Sodagari, MD, sitting in a large, Game of Thrones-styled throne

What has been the best professional accomplishment in your career?

I consider myself extremely fortunate and take great pride in the journey that led me to become an academic radiologist, having received training at incredible institutions and being a member of several amazing radiology organizations, including RSNA. I have the privilege of joining a wonderful community of inspiring friends, colleagues and mentors in radiology. I enjoy seeing them at conferences and collaborating with them at various radiology organizations. One aspect of my professional life that brings me particular joy and satisfaction is my interactions with aspiring radiologists, especially international medical graduates.

Through my leadership role in the North American Iranian Radiological Society (NAIRS), I have had the privilege of witnessing the journey of these aspiring radiologists and facilitating networking and mentorship opportunities among radiologists and trainees with similar backgrounds. Being part of these communities has not only enriched my professional network but also fueled my own growth.

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced in building your career?

Leaving my family and friends and emigrating to a new country to pursue training has been my most difficult life experience. Navigating the challenges of living in a new country, communicating in a different language, learning nuances of practicing medicine and conducting research in a new environment, building new professional relationships and friendships, and getting into residency was not easy. I am grateful for all the support and guidance I have received from so many phenomenal mentors and friends and my family’s encouragement and unwavering support.

Additionally, managing the demands of radiology training while dealing with a chronic illness presented additional challenges. Fortunately, the incredible support from the educational leadership of my residency program and the camaraderie of my co-residents and co-fellows played a crucial role in helping me overcome these difficulties.

Today, looking back, I realize the challenges I faced have shaped me into a more resilient and resourceful radiologist. This journey has not only taken me to professional fulfillment but also instilled in me a deep appreciation for the power of human connections and the strength we find within ourselves when we dare to dream beyond our comfort zone.

Faezeh Sodagari, MD, radiologist standing on concrete overpass at McCormick Place with the Chicago skyline in the background

What RSNA resources do you use/have you used to assist you with your professional development and in your daily practice?

RSNA’s resources are invaluable in my professional development and daily practice. The annual meetings provide an exceptional platform for networking with friends and mentors. The connections made during these meetings have been pivotal in shaping my career, providing inspiration, and fostering professional collaborations and friendships.

The educational content offered at the meetings is unparalleled, covering everything from the fundamentals of radiology to exciting new technologies. I always add virtual access to my registration to watch the recordings and review educational exhibits even months after the meeting. In addition, I regularly turn to RSNA Journals, particularly RadioGraphics and Radiology, as integral tools in both my clinical work and research.

I actively participate in RSNA research-focused educational offerings, including workshops and courses. Participating in the VOICE program, ITAR course and the NIH Grantsmanship workshop has been instrumental in enhancing my research skills. These opportunities offer focused, practical skills that contribute significantly to improving our academic careers.

When you’re not working, how do you like to spend your free time?

I love discovering new cuisines and restaurants with my husband, indulging in the art of cooking Persian food, binge-watching TV series and movies, and exploring local museums and botanical gardens. Currently, we are immersing ourselves in the variety of art and entertainment options that Cleveland offers.

For More Information

Connect with Dr. Sodagari on social media:

X: @fsodagari

Instagram: f_soda


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