One of the most interesting things about interventional radiology is how techniques have been borrowed from other areas. The lateral thinking which characterises this new specialty has allowed it to flourish even while it has lost "turf" to other specialties. Inevitably, primary referral to interventional radiologists will happen in the same way as referral to, say, surgeons or cardiologists dose already. Those who administer health funds and medical education will need to adjust to this new situation. This article provides examples of many treatment tasks that the interventional radiologist now tackles.