Masters Classes for Physicians

Dr. Guttler offers one-on-one to 3 students classes for endocrinologists with an interest in interventional thyroidology. These classes, held at the Thyroid Center of Santa Monica, CA, cover state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment options for patients affected by thyroid disorders such as thyroid nodules, and  thyroid cancer.

Ethanol ablation PEI of thyroid cystic nodules is the treatment of choice now. However, this is an operator dependent procedure.Training with an expert will give you a head start to doing PEI on your patients and getting referrals from other endocrinologists not training in PEI. There are CPT codes now available, but one should consider only taking cash as the reimbursement is low.

Radiofrequency ablation RFA is the treatment of choice for more solid nodules. Hands on workshop training in thyroid PEI with phantom models with cysts to practice ablation. RFA workshop with generator and electrode with bovine liver models with beef “nodules” to practice ablation. Patient ablation procedures to watch Dr.Guttler’s technique for treating with PEI or RFA.

RFA is FDA approved for soft tissue use and there are clinical trials ongoing now, with several private centers  doing RFA for cash .There are no CPT codes for thyroid RFA.

My class is personal and I work just with you for the 3 days.The fee is $1000/day. If there are 2-3 students at a time the fee is $500/day for each.

Masters classes are open to all endocrinologists as well as FNA physicians to further their education.

Top of the line systems for RFA will be used for the training sessions.

Call me at 310-393-8860 or

Richard Guttler Interventional Thyroidologist.

Masters classes give the student the necessary skills to start their own thyroid-specific practice. The classes are taken over a 3- or 5-day period, or longer if desired. The 3-day course covers topics and skills needed for an endocrinologist to have an emphasis on thyroid conditions, while the 5-day course is for those who wish to specialize in thyroid patients.

Three-Day Course Program Overview

This program offers study with Dr. Richard Guttler, one of the early experts in the use of ultrasound and cytopathology to evaluate and treat thyroid and parathyroid disorders.

Download Master Class Description and Sample Course Outline here. See below for information on our workshops and Masters classes, as well as numerous testimonials from physician students who have completed the courses.


This is a combined lecture and hands-on program to familiarize the physician with all aspects of thyroid ultrasound. Diagnostic and interventional thyroid ultrasound will be covered, including:

  • Parathyroid identification and USG parathyroid FNA
  • Cancer lymph node mapping and USG lymph node FNA
  • Washout testing for cancer markers
  • PEI (percutaneous ethanol injection) therapy for cancer nodes, thyroid and parathyroid cysts, and thyroid nodules
  • Radiofrequency RFA ablation and HIFU echotherapy ablation for solid nodules
  • MB DYE localization procedure: The use of methylene blue dye to localize nodal neck metastasis for the surgeons 1 to 3 hours before the operation
  • Active surveillance Methology for following non-aggressive <1 cm micro-papillary thyroid cancer without surgery.
  • eROSE: The rapid onsite evaluation of the first pass for cellular adequacy during the biopsy by the endocrinologist

The microscope review of all biopsy materials adds the last component to a well-rounded program. Proper smearing technique will be taught to all students to improve their ability to make good smears.

We will use the Interventional Ultrasound Lab Esiote Biosound Italian MyLab70 with X-Vision ultrasound machine, which is used by trend-setting thyroid ultrasound expert Dr.Roberto Valcavi in Italy.

A second ultrasound room with a MyLab25 with X-view upgrade and plasma TV monitor is available for diagnostic practice, and USG FNA as well as cyst drainage can be done on our Blue Phantom.


In order to complete our Masters classes, you must meet the following conditions:

  • The desire to learn all aspects of diagnostic and interventional ultrasound on patients with thyroid or parathyroid masses
  • The basic AACE ultrasound course is recommended but not essential
  • Already be practicing as an endocrinologist

You must also purchase the following in order to complete coursework:

  • Thyroid Ultrasound by Jack Baskin
  • Thyroid Cytopathology by Douglas Clark

These books can be purchased from Amazon.


There is a maximum of three physicians accepted for each course in order for us to provide a specialized learning environment. To apply, please email Dr. Guttler.


Travel and hotel are the responsibility of the student. Please contact us for more information regarding lodging and activities while in the Santa Monica area.


$1000/day for one student only and $500/ day if there are or 2 or 3. 50% deposit to hold dates.Check or cashier check only; no credit cards. Payment can be mailed to:

Richard Guttler MD, FACE
1328 16 th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Disclaimer: No CME is given for this masters class; however, a detailed diploma describing everything you learned is included.

To learn more about our workshops or classes, please call us at (310) 393-8860.

Download Master Class Description and Sample Course Outline here.

One-of-a-Kind Clinical Thyroidology Practice

Dr. Guttler is seeking an associate to begin the necessary training to transition from associate to owner of a private thyroid center over 3 years.

The training includes nuclear thyroidology, thyroid cytopathology, diagnostic and interventional ultrasound, ethanol ablation of cysts and thyroid cancer neck lymph nodes, the new radiofrequency ablation RFA of large solid benign nodules and eventual low risk thyroid cancers in-situ.

The center runs week days 9-5; no weekends or hospital. Also no diabetes. Parathyroid disease is included for FNA, and ethanol ablation of parathyroid cysts. Taking over Dr.Guttler’s master classes in ethanol ablation and RFA is also part of the center’s work.

December 12, 2013

RE: Dr. Richard Guttler
1328 16th St
Santa Monica, CA 90404

To Whom It May Concern:
Dear Sir or Madam:

This letter is based on the time I spent with Dr. Richard Guttler attending his Master Class in Thyroidology in 2013. He is one of the first endocrinology physicians who introduced the use of ultrasound in the diagnosis and management of thyroid disorders in the United States.

Additionally, he has extensive knowledge in the field of cytopathology and histopathology.

Needless to say, the time I spent with Dr. Guttler was very educational. This process included hands on experience in diagnostic ultrasounds, on phantoms as well as live subjects. This included preparing high quality smears of fine needle aspiration biopsy specimens with on-site determination of the adequacy of the specimen (EROS).

I was very impressed by the extensive library of thyroid ultrasound images and cyto/histopathology slides. He has a remarkable collection which includes some of the rarest conditions pertaining to the thyroid that one can think of. During the time that I spent at his office, I had free access to this extensive library to enhance my knowledge.

In addition to ultrasound-related procedures, Dr. Guttler offers training in nuclear medicine as well. Almost one full day of the master class is dedicated to nuclear medicine. This also included direct patient care, under Dr. Guttler’s supervision, performing I-123 uptakes and scans.

He pays meticulous attention to detail, ranging from major aspects such as the type of ultrasound machine used to the gauge of the needle used for different types of procedures and even the type of ultrasound probe covers used. In fact, he gives a trainee every single detail necessary to set up a thyroid practice.

As impressive as all this is, there are two other factors which truly made my experience worthwhile. The passion and sincerity with which Dr. Guttler approaches the management of patients with thyroid disorders is definitely noteworthy. Last, but not least, this whole educational experience takes place in a very casual and friendly setting. Dr. Guttler and his assistant were both very friendly and down-to-earth and made me feel at home while I was there. On the whole, it was a very enjoyable educational experience, not to mention lunch at some of the fine local restaurants.

I would be delighted to go back at some point for further training with Dr. Guttler. I would highly recommend his master class to any candidate who is interested in gaining experience with thyroid ultrasounds and related procedures, and also nuclear medicine procedures relating to the thyroid gland.

Sincerely yours,
Ganesh Nair, M.D., F.A.C.P, F.A.C.E

To Whom It May Concern:

I recently attended Dr. Richard Guttler’s thyroid seminar. It was quite informative and I am happy to say that I have learned and am currently using Dr. Guttler’s techniques within my own clinic.

I highly recommend attending his courses in how to establish a successful thyroid clinic.

Dr. Oscar Castro

February 18, 2011

Dr. Richard B. Guttler
Santa Monica Thyroid Diagnostic Medical Group, Inc.
1328 16th Street
Santa Monica, CA 904040

Dear Dick,

Thank you so much for the wonderful tutorial experience in your office this past December. It was an intense three days, but very valuable to me as a general clinical endocrinologist.

Although I have years of experience doing thyroid FNA, I have recently upgraded to utilizing ultrasound guidance. The time I spent in your office really improved my expertise in ultrasound-guided FNA techniques, reading ultrasounds, and of course lymph node mapping and biopsy for the evaluation and treatment of metastatic thyroid carcinoma. Courses run by our national organizations have been helpful, but lack the individualized attention a one-to-one preceptorship such as yours offers.

My exposure to nuclear medicine and thyroid cytopathology has given me new insight into what can be accomplished by the clinical endocrinologist. I intend to work on obtaining certification in those areas as well.

Thank also for your travel, accommodation and restaurant recommendations. Your advice did not disappoint, although I find it hard to imagine not having a great time in Santa Monica!

Please express my appreciation to your fine staff and the lovely patients I met. I will be back soon for another Cytopathology lesson!

Warm regards,
Elaine C. Drobny, MD, FACE


Re: the 1-week rotation at the Santa Monica Thyroid Center in December 2009

Dr. Guttler,

Thank you for allowing me to work for a week with you at the Santa Monica Thyroid Center this past December. I appreciated the opportunity to observe the inner workings of a thyroid only practice model. I found it very educational to review both benign and malignant thyroid pathology from your extensive slide library. It was valuable to review the lectures from recent thyroid pathology conferences as well. I had ample time and the generously provided materials to practice slide preparation and to work with the thyroid biopsy phantom. Additionally, thyroid grand rounds at USC was a good educational experience.

Thank you for your hospitality, the time you took to teach and for allowing me to observe your practice for the week. I am grateful for the experience.



I think it is very fine what you are doing with the thyroid mentoring program and I hope many take you up on this. It is innovative and cutting edge in medical education. I have often thought that experienced clinicians like you are under-appreciated and that some of these academicians who write more than they have read often give bad advice in text books. For me, it’s probably too late but it sure sounds like fun.


June 24, 2010

Dear Dr. Guttler,

Thank you for the opportunity to observe your thyroid practice first hand.  I had a wonderful learning experience over three days.  I appreciated learning about performance of thyroid uptake and scans, thyroid ultrasound identification of lymph nodes and parathyroid glands and different ways for preparation of slides for FNA, first look techniques for observation of FNA slides under the microscope and the longitudinal FNA approach.  Further, I really appreciated you taking the time to go over FNA Cytopathology, billing issues regarding thyroid related procedures, and other didactic materials. I enjoyed the “thyroid only practice” atmosphere of your office and enjoyed interacting with your staff.
As an endocrinologist in practice it is heartening to learn of alternate practice models like yours.

Keep up the good work.

Best regards,

Dr. Richard Guttler’s Masters Class in Clinical Thyroidology

The First Master Graduate in Clinical Thyroidology

Kathleen Hands MD, FACE, ECNU

I am honored to have spent last week with Kathleen Hands, ACT member from San Antonio Texas. She was the first to be certified in endocrine neck ultrasound, ECNU by AACE.

She is the first 100% clinical thyroidologist I personally certify as a master. She worked on needle placement with Ace Needleme, smearing technique, PEI technique with the blue phantom, did two thyroid uptakes and imaging toward her practical experience toward nuclear certification. She learned nuclear safety protocols, on-site slide preparation for quality assessment, “first look” concepts to be able to look at the thyroid biopsy slides before the pathologist, reviewed all the Santa Monica Thyroid Centers protocols for treatment of cancer, cysts, goiters with RAI/131 and Ethanol. She obtained all codes needed to start a thyroid practice. She is opening a thyroid only practice in San Antonio after years of seeing thyroid patients at the university. She is the local expert on all things thyroid in that Texas city. She will be in private practice by September.

As a master class graduate she will be ask to submit her practice information to my webmaster to be included on my website,, where her paid practice announcement will be seen by millions surfing the web for thyroid information. I have only authorized addition to the website of true thyroid only clinicians who have spent at least a week with me. The website does not accept any other ads. The endocrinologists must be ECNU certified, and plan to have a CLIA thyroid lab, on-site quality assessment, “first look” concept with microscope, digital camera, and be certified in nuclear thyroidology by AACE. The goal is to be a self-contained full service thyroid center. The week at my “store” will teach you the skills needed to have your dream come true. No night call, coverage, hospital patients, and free weekends to enjoy your family.

Congratulations to our ACT member Kathleen, as she is fulfilling her dream of becoming a clinical thyroidologist in Texas.


I am grateful for the opportunity to have spent time with Dr. Richard Guttler MD in his Santa Monica Thyroid Center. This is the place where Dr. Guttler does every aspect of thyroid care except thyroid surgery. He does ultrasound, US-guided FNA, cytopathology evaluation of fine needle aspirates, Percutaneous ethanol injection of thyroid cysts, parathyroid cysts and malignant lymph nodes. In addition he does radioactive iodine treatment and whole body scan.

It was a unique experience where I was mentored on a one to one basis for three consecutive days demonstrating all aspects of thyroid care. Dr. Guttler had rearranged his schedule and made sure that he had the right mixture of patients to demonstrate every aspect of thyroid pathology and the optimum treatment. I got reinforcement in the area of ultrasound of thyroid, parathyroid and lymph nodes and US-guided proper needle placement for FNA biopsy of suspicious lesions. In addition I learned the proper techniques of slide preparation, staining and microscopy. Further I got to participate in radioactive iodine treatment and whole body scan.

Toward the end Dr. Guttler instructed me how to get certification by AIUM. I am very happy to report that within two months after application we have received our AIUM certification. Many, many thanks to Dr. Guttler. He is one physician who believes in the age-old way of one to one instruction in the training of the next generation of physicians.

K. George Thampy, MD PhD FACE ECNU.

Aug 21, 2012

Dear Dick,

Thank you for the five day intensive thyroidology course I had with you. It’s a week very well spent and I have learned a lot to say the least. I have done CME courses in conferences on thyroid in the past and it has helped me in my practice but the time I spent in your clinic gave me a lot more insight on the “how to’s” of running a well-oiled thyroid clinic. I gained confidence in performing neck ultrasounds, learned how to do on site Cytopathology for adequacy, PEI of cysts and lymph nodes and nuclear thyroid procedures. Giving me information on how to connect with the top people on their respective fields (Cytopathology, lab assays and suppliers) is a very important step in giving the best care to my patients and I appreciate that a lot. The coding for the thyroid visits and procedures, giving me lectures on different thyroid topics, encouraging me to avail AACE resources, certifications and courses and advising me to connect with other thyroidologists are very valuable for my vision to the future of my practice. Not to mention that your clinic is in Santa Monica and there’s a lot of places to go to after work to relax.

Please send my regards to your wife and Marilyn. I appreciate their hospitality. I really enjoyed my time there. For me the experience was priceless. I plan to come back next year in preparation for my certification for nuclear procedures and treatment for thyroid disorders. Have a great day.

/s/ Frederick Niegos, MD

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Contact Info
1328 16th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404
Monday – Friday
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
(310) 393-8860