February 15, 2005


 ACVR addresses concerns over digital imaging

Posted Feb. 1, 2005

The American College of Veterinary Radiology has formed a digital imaging standards committee to address concerns regarding digital imaging in veterinary medicine. The committee will work to develop a recommended format and educate practitioners.

In recent years, the digital imaging market has undergone rapid and undisciplined growth. Some practitioners have reported having difficulty purchasing equipment, because they are not educated about the technology issues involved.

Some digital imaging products currently marketed to veterinarians use nonsecure imaging formats and/or proprietary image-archiving methods. These can cause problems. For example, images may not be admissible in a court of law. Proprietary archiving methods used to store and retrieve images may reduce image security. Additionally, proprietary archiving structures may limit the flexibility and future compatibility of a hospital computer network.

The newly formed committee will make recommendations that address these concerns about image security and proprietary imaging standards used in storage and retrieval of digital images.

In human medicine, an imaging standard called Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine was adopted to ensure image security and create an open digital-imaging environment. Adoption of the DICOM standard is one of the primary issues the new committee will address.

"Veterinarians must be cognizant of the legal ramifications and long-term impact digital imaging will have in their practice," said Dr. Matt Wright, chair of the ACVR Digital Imaging Standards Committee. "The DISC goal is to educate veterinarians and make suggestions that will help create an open and secure imaging environment in veterinary medicine."