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I am a physicist with a background in computational physics and imaging, and I received an offer for a NIH postdoctoral fellowship at a very good research hospital on the East Coast. I would join a group of medical doctors working on a particular protein, and I am trying to decide if it would be a good choice career wise. The lab has good instruments, but I am a bit worried of being the only one with a quantitative background in the research group.

Is there anyone who successfully did the physics-medicine transition? And is it possible to go back to more basic science after a biochem-med postdoc? Other things I should consider?

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    I'll bet some of your coworkers will have a "solid quantitative background." People go to medical school after studying physics and math and engineering, not just biology. – user60356 Aug 21 '16 at 23:14
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    As always it is good to know what do you want after. Being a physicist who is very well trained in medical imaging and has good connections to doctors seems to be a good niche for me, that can lead to jobs and foundings, but if you want to be a particle physicist after, it has less appeal, i understand. – Greg Aug 22 '16 at 6:53
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I'll answer the second two questions.

Is there anyone who successfully did the physics-medicine transition?

Yes, medical physicists exist. Some are specially trained in that field, others made the transition. A few years back they were in high demand.

And is it possible to go back to more basic science after a biochem-med postdoc?

Possible, yes. Probably few people want to because it's likely to lead to a pay cut, as last I heard there was high demand for medical physicists.

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    Medical physics is a strange field. IMO, mandating that physicists come from CAMPEP accredited programs and that you must complete a CAMPEP accredited residency is not helping the field. While there is a demand for radiation oncology physicists, there is a bottleneck to get the residencies. It's a great field to be in for research, but I would recommend someone give it serious thought before going down the road of ABR certification to be a clinical physicist. – Hobbes Aug 22 '16 at 16:43

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