Today’s DICOM medical imaging viewers do more than help you view DICOM images. Some apps are polished enough to enhance the image quality as well as create additional data from the acquired images, which aids in diagnosis.
Some of the functions that you can do with these online viewers in order to view the image include:
Improving the image quality
The image’s brightness can be increased or decreased. Contrast can be changed to better distinguish between radio-dense and radiolucent areas in an image. The area of interest can also be zoomed in on.
A special method to improve image quality in the area of interest is done by maximum and minimum intensity projections. This helps isolate places that have absorbed maximum or minimum radiation, identifying them from surrounding areas.
The initial DICOM data set have a series of two-dimensional images taken in all three planes- axial, coronal, and sagittal. These images can be rebuilt to give a three-dimensional view of the structural area. This is called 3D rendering.
Another method, called Multiplanar Reconstruction (MPR), involves making fresh pieces from the 3D reconstructed images.
This allows the radiologist to view unique anatomical stages or angulations from the slices that were initially collected, providing a more comprehensive understanding of the patient’s condition.
Some medical DICOM viewers allow users to make linear or volumetric measurements of anatomical structures. This can be useful for planning treatment and assessing the efficacy of treatment.
For example, in cases of traumatic injury to the bony area, volumetric analysis and comparison of the injured area with the unaffected one can aid in planning the circular remodeling.
Comparing And Combining Medical Images
DICOM medical applications allow radiologists to compare two different images side-by-side. This is useful when assessing the progress of disease over time or the value of treatment.
Two variety medical imaging modalities can also be connected by using certain DICOM apps.
For instance, integrating PET and CT images ensure that areas of increased metabolic activity (located using PET) are drawn to specific anatomical sites (using CT scan).
This allows the physician to extract the advantages of both forms of imaging modalities simultaneously.
What is PACS?
Medical histories, including images, need to be kept and retrieved at various points during clinical workflows. Most medical images are digital and require digital storage.
PACS allows both storage and access to medical images, including CT and MRI scans, ultrasounds, and standard digital X-rays. Generally, a PACS server in the hospital serves the following functions:
Medical images can be stored in a PACS (picture archiving and communication system) for future retrieval. When stored, imaging files are automatically arranged in chronological order and given a label for identification purposes.
Archiving and backup are important for any organization that relies on digital data. It refers to storing data that is not needed on a daily basis in a separate location.
This can be especially important for medical images, which must be archived for a minimum of five years.
PACS servers allow for the storage of large volumes of medical imaging data that is not frequently accessed and for retrieval of this data when needed.
PACS servers can also create backups of medical images and archive them separately so that a digital copy exists in case of system failure.
Each medical image is tagged with information such as the date of image acquisition, patient name, and referring clinician before it is stored.
This makes it easy for clinicians to retrieve a particular image at a later date by searching for it using any one of these tags in the PACS server.
Medical images are an essential part of any healthcare provider’s toolkit.
By understanding how PACS servers work and how to use them, clinicians can make better decisions based on the latest medical imaging technology.