Dr Fiona Miller is a Consultant in Interventional Radiology at Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
How did you choose interventional radiology and why?
I loved IR from the day I started my radiology training. I started training in London but we moved to Cambridge for my husband’s job and at that time there was no IR training programme in Cambridge. I took at DGH post and working alongside another IR up-skilled and then spent two months in Leicester with Dr Bolia.
What’s the best thing about your job?
The work is immensely rewarding – from a simple CT or US guided drainage of pus which provides instant relief for the patient to a below knee angioplasty or embolising a bleeder.
I would advise women not to be put off by the “it’s a hard life, you’ll work too many hours, you can’t be part-time” arguments. In practice there are very few of us – and in the right hospital you will be treasured. You may have to work hard – but there will be flexibility and support!
What advice would you give to women considering a career in interventional radiology?
My advice would be ‘go for it’ at whatever stage you are now.
Is there a woman you look up to in interventional radiology? And if so why?
Although I never worked with her I look up to Anna Belli. Despite her obvious success she has remained warm, approachable friendly and down to earth. I remember her saying that our smaller hands and gentle touch equip us well for the job.
Radiology training for many women occurs during the childbearing years – and does involve exposure to radiation. The lack of training opportunities makes flexibility around pregnancy harder – and this needs to be discussed openly if we are to attract women to IR.