I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the BSHNI for helping to support my 6-week observership at The Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (MEEI) in Boston, USA. The institution was founded in 1824 and has since become one of the leading ENT hospitals in the USA. During the observership, I had the opportunity to learn from a fantastic team of radiologists headed by Dr Hugh Curtin and received teaching on various aspects of head and neck anatomy and pathology. I was also fortunate enough to attend a series of residents’ lectures held at Massachusetts General Hospital addressing various aspects of head and neck imaging.

Under the guidance of Dr Amy Juliano, I also undertook in project work, which enabled me to expand my knowledge base and provide an insight into the cutting edge research that is currently underway in the field. I also had the opportunity to learn more about the application of specific techniques in order to better aid patient diagnosis. In particular, the use of 4D CT for the localisation of parathyroid adenomas, CBCT for a wide variety of temporal bone pathologies and optimisation of MRI techniques to delineate the anatomy of the membranous labyrinth. Finally, MEEI is home to a world-renowned otopathology laboratory, which was established in 1961 by the famous otologist Dr Harold F. Schuknecht. It is one of the few places that houses a library of carefully produced histopathological slides, which are available for review. I was able to spend some time in the library examining various slides, aiding my understanding of temporal bone anatomy.

Ultimately, I found my experience at MEEI invaluable and thoroughly enjoyable. I returned with even greater enthusiasm for radiology and my chosen subspecialty of head and neck imaging. I am greatly indebted to the BSHNI for facilitating this experience and would encourage my trainee colleagues to consider similar ventures.

Best wishes,



Phil Touska – Winner 2018