#TOTW from 02-03-16 ‘How *NOT* to use #SoMe’

Evenin’ all!

For those of you that haven’t come across the term #SoMe before – those of you that haven’t been following my blog before now that is – then it’s short for #SocialMedia. So the title and topic of this week’s #TOTW is:

You’d think someone in his position would have a bit more sense…clearly not! How *NOT* to use

Now you would think, or at least hope that someone in this doctor’s position would have a bit more common sense and may be a bit more ‘media-savvy,’ however it would appear not to be the case! Of course if he has those beliefs and opinions then that’s fine, so long as he keeps them to himself. Given that he is a consultant in a position of responsibility, then this is clearly not acceptable behaviour and he should indeed receive at the very least a good ticking off from his professional body. I would also hope he be booked on a course to teach him how to use #SoMe responsibly!

For those of us in healthcare that choose to use #SoMe to keep in touch with fellow professionals it is important to remember that what we put out there is going into the public domain for anyone and everyone to see – regardless of how tightly you think you have your privacy settings locked down! It is worth looking up to see if your employer has a policy on #SoMe. If you work for the NHS then chances are they will have. Download it, read it, and take note! You, and you alone are responsible for what you put out there. If you are still unsure as to what you should or perhaps more importantly, shouldn’t be publishing via #SoMe, then there is plenty of material available online for you to #GoLearn!

And remember…#SoMe should and can be fun as well as using it for your continuing professional development!

That’s ya lot for this week folks!

Benjamin S.



#TOTW from 11-02-16 ‘Is the world finally waking up to intersex rights?’


So I guess before you think of an answer to the question posed above, a more appropriate one would be, ‘have you heard of intersex?’ If so, what do you know? This week’s #TOTW is a great article about intersex with some facts and figures about how many intersex people there are:

“For about one in 2,000 people binary notions of male and female are particularly problematic”

One of the most striking passages from the article I found was:

“For about one in 2,000 people binary notions of male and female are particularly problematic. Research has found between 0.05% and 1.7% of the global population (pdf) are born with intersex traits – biological sex characteristics that don’t conform to typical notions of male or female. The upper estimation is around the same number of red haired people, yet intersex people are far less visible.”

Another striking (and pretty sad) quote I thought was:

complete indifference [is shown] to life-threatening genital mutilations and infanticide that intersex children suffer”.

Read the full article and make your own mind up. Even though i’ve tweeted about intersex before, I wasn’t aware of the stats and the torture that children in some countries go through. It’s pretty upsetting to be honest, but a worthwhile read and one that will hopefully provide you with a basic understanding of how difficult it is for those people that don’t fit into the rigid male/female label we like to assign at birth.

As always – thank for reading!

Ben 🙂


#TOTM from 12-01-16: ‘Ok, so it’s an ad for Samsung…’

Hey, hey, hey!

Long time no blog, I know! I’ve been away on me holidays and busy with an assignment for my postgrad, but I thought I should kick things off with a #TOTM for January:

A great demonstration of how learning a little sign language can make a big difference.

It’s a retweet of a tweet from @BritishSignBSL and I just think it’s a great ad. So, no i’m not advocating or endorsing the use of Samsung products, but I am praising Samsung for an ad that will hopefully make you smile – or even cry, as it did me! As it says when you click on the link, it’s not British sign language, but you get the message – hopefully! Now it’s only a few minutes, so please click on the link and watch the video – if you haven’t already seen it that is!

Once i’ve got my postgrad out the way in a few months time i’m going to be “signing” (pun intended!) up to British Sign Language’s online ‘Introducing BSL‘ course:


Learning some BSL is something that i’ve wanted to do for many years now and I figure it’s time I pull my finger out and start using it to communicate – in an appropriate manner naturally!

Have a look and maybe sign-up yourself!

It’s good to be back – I hope you agree!

Ben 🙂

World Radiography Day 2015



Happy World Radiography Day or #WRD2015 if we’re talking in the language of #SoMe! This is the day that every year we celebrate the discovery of x-radiation by Wilhelm Roentgen in 1895. Thanks Wil!

There’s no #TOTW this week as I just wanted to mark this special day – and my 3000th tweet – with a thank you for the support all my followers have given me since I started tweeting as radiographerben back in December 2014! Some of my friends and colleagues in the world of radiography manage to blog more frequently – and in most cases, more eloquently than I – but I would like to think that my short blog entries on a weekly basis are finding homes on the smartphones, tablets and computers of my followers! I would love to have more interaction with my followers and others who just happen across my tweets and blogs. Please if you do already follow me then feel free to contact me via my blog or my Twitter @radiographerben and if you’re just passing through, then drop me a line and say hi!

I like to use my tweets and blogs both for myself in terms of my continuing professional development, and for the education/delectation of any of you that might be interested in the things I talk about. There are many subjects that I am passionate about (dementia, FGM, end-of-life issues, patient care, gender identity, the use of social media to promote and educate, antibiotic resistance and mental health to name several!) and I enjoy sharing this passion via the medium of social media, in my case, Twitter, Facebook and WordPress. I feel extremely privileged and very lucky to have built up the following that I have and sincerely thank each and every one of you that take the time to look at what I publish.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Here’s to the next 3000 tweets!

Ben 🙂

PS Seeing as it is #WRD2015 and I and my fellow #SoMe enthusiasts are doing our best to inform our followers and those that are interested as to what we as radiographers do, here’s a link to my blog from back in January of this year on what I, as a diagnostic radiographer do on a typical 12hr shift:


October’s #TOTM from 09-10-15 ‘Breast cancer is not just a female thing guys’


I’ve just had a trawl through last month’s tweets and there is one I want to pick out for another airing as it’s such an important message:

is not just a female thing guys

You might not have known it was…*IS*…possible for blokes to get breast cancer, so please, just spare a few minutes to click on the link and find out how to examine yourselves. It’s not just your balls you have to play with!


Over and out.

#TOTW from 14-10-15 ‘Experience: I am in constant pain’ – Fibromyalgia


How does this time of the week come around so quickly?! This week I have chosen a topic that many people will probably not have heard of before, so my #TOTW is:

People that suffer from don’t necessarily look ill, that doesn’t mean they aren’t though!

If you have heard of the condition before then great, if not please take the time to have a quick look at this link and see if you can learn a little bit about how much people can suffer from something that is not always visible to the outside world. This is in some way similar to people that have mental health issues to endure. Just because an illness is not visible, or on display to the outside world does not mean that it doesn’t exist. Just because someone doesn’t have an arm in a sling or a leg in plaster, isn’t to say that they cannot be suffering. Please think about that in future before suggesting that someone is “trying it on” or is making things up.

If just one person that didn’t previously know what fibromyalgia is clicks on the link above and gains a greater understanding of those who are affected by it, then the time it has take me to throw together this quick blog entry will have been time well spent. Of course if you wish to learn even more about fibromyalgia, or FM as it is commonly referred to then you could always take a look at the link below too:


Thanks for taking the time to get this far; I hope you’ve learned something!


Ben 🙂

#TOTW from 28-09-15 “Do you know what Endometriosis is?”


Being on nights I didn’t tweet as much last week, but the one I do want to highlight as my #TOTW is:

Do you know what is? If not,

I’d heard of endometriosis before, but didn’t actually know what is was or quite how debilitating it can be. If you’re a guy and in the same position as me – having heard about it but only knowing as much as it’s related to “women’s troubles,” then take a look at this article and #GoLearn!

October already…how did we get to it so soon?!

Ben 🙂

#TOTW from 14-09-15 ‘Bowel cancer screening can also detect polyps’


Short n’ sweet this week. As per usual i’ve managed to cover a rather wide range of topics this last week, but there was one in particular that I feel deserves a chance to be seen by more people. So here is my #TOTW:

Bowel cancer can also detect polyps. These are not cancers, but may develop into cancers over time

It’s such a simple message. Take a quick look at the link and #GoLearn a bit more about polyps, what they are and how they can be dealt with.

That is all.

Ben 🙂

#TOTW (x13!) Assisted Dying Week

Hey Folks!

Well as it has been #AssistedDyingWeek, there isn’t a single #TOTW but instead a whole week’s worth to highlight (see below).

Where to begin?

Well, I am hugely disappointed at the result of the vote in the House of Commons. However, this Bill was never going to make it any further really as it did not have the support of the Government. I was surprised at how many MPs did vote against it though. I understand that they were allowed to vote as a matter of conscience, but I thought it was an MP’s role to reflect the thoughts and views of their electorate – the vast majority of whom support the calls for progress toward some form of law governing Assisted Dying. Merely sweeping this issue under the carpet for another 5 years will not give the country what it needs in relation to Assisted Dying. If those MPs that were so against the Bill felt it was poorly written and in need of further safeguards, then the right thing to do would have been to vote YES and to send the Bill through to the next stage. Here it would have been scrutinised line by line, where there would have been plenty of opportunity for further debate and discussion on the law, both as it stands and how it may look in the future. Simply to dismiss it out of hand with some of the ill-thought out language used by some of the MPs was a great shame. It was a sad day for our democracy, when the people that were elected to represent our views, got it so badly wrong, being so out of touch with the people that put them there in the first place.

This is of course a setback, but the fight for a change in the law relating to Assisted Dying will go on. What this Bill has done is to get lots of publicity for the issue and to really bring it out into the open. This is what is needed. I believe that this issue is of such fundamental importance that it should be put to the people of this country in a referendum. If MPs are unable to move this forward then the public should be given the opportunity to decide. Surely there can’t be anything much more important than how people choose to end the lives and the support they can and should be given at such a time. If we are going to be having a referendum on an issue such as Britain’s continued membership of the European Union, then surely the matter of how and when we choose to die would merit such a similar show of public involvement?

I hope that I haven’t bombarded you all with too many tweets on the issue this week, it’s just that this is a matter that I feel very strongly about, and will continue to highlight as the fight for a change in the law goes on!

Thank you for all the favourites/likes/retweets etc this last week and for getting involved. It’s been a while since I had a feature week like this, and I enjoyed putting it all together!

If you feel strongly about this issue, then DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! Write to your MP, join a campaign group, get involved! The law will not get changed unless we fight for it!

Thanks again!

Ben 🙂

  1. It’s great to see so many people using to follow the debate on ! This is what is needed – debate, not inaction!
  2. This Bill does not de-value life, far from it. It values quality of life & choice
  3. – Have you contacted your MP to see if they are attending today’s debate. Mine is and I have tweeted her.
  4. – Beautifully, and soundly-written article in support of the right to choose
  5. – “An “assisted dying” law sends the message that, if you are terminally ill…”
  6. “…taking your own life is something for you to consider….” AND SO IT SHOULD BE!!!
  7. – This letter, written by a Doctor, to me says why we *should* allow debate on this
  8. “More thought needs to go into amending the bill further and looking at the practicalities of how assisted dying could be implemented.”
  9. – Some Doctors say that current ‘ law is dangerous and cruel’
  10. – Welby urges MPs: reject right-to-die bill that ‘crosses the Rubicon’
  11. – Former chief prosecutor says laws must change to allow people to die
  12. – ‘ leaves vulnerable at risk’
  13. With the 2nd reading of ‘s Bill due on Friday, I’m having an

#TipsForNewRads – 10 things to know for theatre radiography

Adding to the #TipsForNewRads that have been appearing on #SoMe over the last couple of weeks, I thought I might add to the mix with a list of things to know when going to theatre. I know that students will already have experienced going to theatre as part of clinical placement, but some may not have spent as much time in there as others. It is by no means an exhaustive checklist, more general observations from my time in theatre to date!

Anyways, here goes:

  1. Take part in the team brief if you can. I always join in if i’m up in theatre when it’s going on. You often find out more information about the patient and also what the surgeon is intending to do, and how.
  2. Always introduce yourself to theatre staff you’ve not met before.
  3. Check your image intensifier is clean before using it. Not all people are as thorough as you may be when it comes to cleaning – blood gets EVERYWHERE on a C-arm!
  4. If you’re unsure of how to go ahead with a procedure, or for example it may be a surgeon you’ve not worked with before, NEVER be afraid to ask what they want, or how they want you to position your image intensifier and monitors.
  5. You are an integral part of the operating team, not just an add-on, so get involved! Don’t just restrict yourself to the radiography side of things. You should help in the transfer of patients, clean up between cases, make notes if asked, get things if you aren’t busy x-raying. The more you get involved, the more the theatre staff will appreciate you and help you when you need.
  6. At the end of the procedure, if you are unsure which images to save, then again, just ask the surgeon – never assume!
  7. Always clean your image intensifier after use and leave it in a state which you would like to use it.
  8. If you don’t send and/or process the images from your case yourself, it is your responsibility to ensure that this gets done.
  9. Always communicate with the main department. Theatre lists change all the time. You may have just popped up to theatre for a “quick” MUA, only to find out that they need you all day! It helps whoever is in charge of running X-ray for theatres to plan the day if you keep in touch with them.
  10. ENJOY! Theatre radiography is a great part of your role as a diagnostic radiographer. You get to meet and be part of several different theatre teams. You will learn a lot!

There you have it! Like I said, not everything you need to know, but hopefully a useful list for newbies! Please feel free to comment on what i’ve said, or add your own handy hints!