Dr. Savvas Nicolaou



Dr. Savvas Nicolaou is the Director of Emergency and Trauma Imaging at Vancouver General Hospital, as well as a Professor  of Radiology at the University of British Columbia.  He is also the vice chair of undergraduate education and continuous professional development. He completed his medical degree at the University of Toronto, and residency in Diagnostic Radiology at University of British Columbia.

Dr. Nicolaou has been actively involved in teaching medical students, residents, and fellows and has served as a mentor for many of them. At the Faculty of Medicine, he has been involved as the Director of the Undergraduate Radiology Education, where he has helped to integrate radiology into the medical curriculum. He has been the recipient of many teaching awards, and was recently presented with the UBC Killam Teaching Prize in 2013, which recognizes all aspects of outstanding teaching at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Dr. Nicolaou continues to contribute to the field of emergency radiology, publishing over 150 articles and over 400 abstracts in peer-reviewed journals. Using state-of-the-art imaging technology, he is investigating ways to develop faster, safer, and more sensitive methods for diagnosing patients in the acute care setting. Major focus of research is on Ultra Low dose techniques in the acute setting, Dual Energy CT in the acute setting, Polytrauma Imaging, Brain Perfusion in trauma and role of MRI in the acute setting and AI in the acute setting.

  • Medical Degrees, other degrees:  MD,FRCPC
  • Board certification:  FRCPC-certified radiologist. ABR-certified radiologist, SCCT level 3 certified in Cardiac Imaging.
  • Internship: Surgical Internship St Michaels Hospital UT
  • Residency: University of British Columbia
  • Sub-specialty and interests: ER/Trauma imaging, Musculoskeletal Imaging, Cardiac Imaging, Dual-Energy CT
  • University Appointment and titles:  Associate Professor, University of British Columbia, UBC Vice-Chair of Undergraduate Radiology Medical Education and Continuing Professional Development
  • Hospital appointment: Director of ER/Trauma Imaging, Vancouver General Hospital

Example Project(s)

“Faster magnetic resonance imaging in emergency room patients with right lower quadrant pain and suspected acute appendicitis” Emergency Departments (ED) are becoming busier, with a resultant increase in the number of imaging referrals. The purpose of this study was to assess the diagnostic accuracy of an abbreviated two sequence magnetic resonance (MR) protocol for evaluating ED patients with right lower quadrant pain and suspected acute appendicitis, with a view to expediting patient turnaround times and imaging costs. “CCTA in patients with positive troponin and low clinical suspicion for ACS: a useful diagnostic option to exclude obstructive CAD” It is uncertain whether patients with elevated troponin and non-classical presentation of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) should receive coronary CT angiography (CCTA). A proportion of these patients will have no coronary artery disease (CAD) and would benefit from non-invasive investigations and expedited discharge. Objectives were to determine most common diagnoses and rate of ACS among patients with positive troponin and low clinical suspicion of ACS who received CCTA.

Research Keywords

Emergency/Trauma Radiology, MRI, Computed Tomography, Artificial Intelligence in Imaging 

First Nations land acknowledegement

We acknowledge that the UBC Point Grey campus is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm.

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