Monitors and Workstations
The Second most important part of a modern day medical imaging system is where the final images are displayed, and how the user interacts with them.
Often overlooked, the speed and quality of image delivery is very important. Needs vary drastically here, from the Orthopedic surgeon looking for specific bone density variations that are more clearly seen, to the Radiologist needing to see soft tissue density differences that are not obvious.
Monitor technology continues to improve, is more reliable and less expensive than ever.
When installing monitors in your facility, it is important to select an optimum monitor which is suited for the information volume of the medical image you need to display. Information volume of a medical image differs depending on the modality which creates the image. When displaying medical images, it is important that you select monitors offering refined rendering of subtle shadings and unified display between multiple monitors.
Medical Imaging Technologies can help you understand what's available, and make recommendations based on your needs.
For any diagnostic interpretation, understanding the "Diagnostic" level of monitor is important. Non-diagnostic monitors have tone characteristics which may vary even between the same models. The tones for diagnostic monitors are adjusted at the factory to be compliant with the DICOM Part 14 standard. This ensures the most consistent shading possible, allowing you to make the most accurate diagnosis.
Modern diagnostic monitors are equipped with an LED backlight that offers a significantly longer service life over conventional CCFL, which deteriorate more quickly. In addition, you can maintain high brightness while simultaneously lowering power consumption. Since the LED backlight is mercury-free, it will also reduce any potential impact on the environment when it is disposed of.
Wide viewing angles allow you to view the screen from the side with minimal color shift, also permitting more than one person to view the monitor comfortably at the same time.
On certain models, an Integrated Front Sensor housed within the front bezel measures brightness and tones and calibrates to the DICOM Part 14 standard. The hands-free IFS performs quality control tasks and does not interfere with the viewing area while in use. This dramatically cuts the workload and maintenance costs needed for maintaining monitor quality control.
The Digital Uniformity Equalizer function helps to even out fluctuations in brightness and chroma on different parts of the screen to provide smoother images, a quality typically difficult to attain due to the characteristics of LCD monitors.
On some models, a specific function allows you to choose various modes for different modalities such as CR, CT, and endoscopy. It can be conveniently accessed using the monitor's front panel buttons to easily switch to optimal image viewing conditions.
As the incidence of breast cancer rises, regular mammograms are recommended for early detection. It is vital in the process of early breast cancer detection to find subtle masses and calcifications. Film imaging for mammography diagnosis has long been the primary methodology. However, to meet the demand for a higher quality of images and reduction of reading time and cost, digitizing and networking of medical images in a filmless environment is spreading rapidly.
The transition from film to filmless mammography naturally requires a monitor to display extremely precise images equal to or better than film mammography. In the mammography field today high-performance monitors featuring high resolutions and displaying high density images contribute to the process of early breast cancer detection.
Information Volume of a digital mammography image should exceed 5 Million Pixels (5MP). When a lower resolution monitor displays this information volume, the image is either displayed partially at 1:1 pixel mapping or narrowed when displayed to fit the monitor resulting the loss in image quality and mosaic to appear. Therefore, monitor with high resolution of more than 5 megapixels are required to display the correct information volume of a digital mammography image.
5 and 10 mega pixel monitors allow you to see fine details that are essential for digital mammography. The high resolution retains important information to prevent decreased image quality and pixelation that occur when viewing at a lower resolution.
Viewing two images on a single monitor without obtrusive bezels offers greater hanging protocol flexibility for richer comparisons between past and present images. In addition, viewing on one screen provides a consistent color point when comparing images for convenience and low cost for quality control.
To detect the smallest structures, the monitor offers a high contrast ratio to accurately render the finer details. The deeper black levels distinguish similar shades of gray for sharper monochrome image reproduction.
The Ambient Light Tracking function with embedded ambient light sensor available on certain models continuously checks the lighting conditions of the room and automatically optimizes the monitor's brightness and grayscale tone to DICOM Part 14. This ensures consis- tently accurate images at all times.
Clinical Review Monitors
Standard monitors for general office use have grayscale tone characteristics which may vary even between the same models. In the medical field, monitors must display medical images accurately and consistently. Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) Part 14 specifies a display function for grayscale which is now used as a standard to adjust the grayscale tone characteristics of monitors used in the medical field.
Clinical review monitors are great for review of patient images but also suitable for displaying clinical record applications, and are more cost-efficient solutions compared with Diagnostic level monitors, so you can continue to review medical images optimized for DICOM Part 14 while ensuring higher savings.
The 16:10 or 16:9 aspect ratio of these widescreen monitors provides significantly more horizontal space than aspect ratios of conventional square monitors. The screen is wide enough so that you can keep tool palettes open without covering the window you are working on.
The new, perfectly flat surface design of certain monitors allows touch operation all the way to the edges of the display area without being obstructed by the bezel for a smooth touch experience.
With advances in medical imaging technology over the years, hospitals are now handling a wider variety and larger volume of image data. As a result, it is increasingly common for medical facilities to use a mix of different monitors to interpret images. The multi-modality approach allows a variety of images to be displayed on a single screen...an essential step forward for medicine.
When color and monochrome images are displayed together on conventional monitors, both images are shown with the same brightness and grayscale tones. Designed Multi-modality monitors detect the display area of each image, reproducing them with individually optimized brightness and grayscale tones.
Our multi-modality monitors are capable of displaying 4, 6, or 8 megapixels of information volume without the obtrusive bezels typically found in a multi-monitor setup. Multi-modality solutions give plenty of room to display all necessary imaging applications at once to streamline the radiology workflow and enhance overall efficiency.
As the industry's first color multi-modality monitor to receive FDA 510(k) clearance for mammography and general radiography, we can provide a monitor not only capable of displaying MRI, CT, and ultrasound images, but also digital mammography images where high performance is essential.
Unique Hybrid Gamma functions distinguish whether the images being displayed are monochrome or color and displays each image in optimal brightness and tone, even when viewed on the screen at the same time. This expands the usability of PACS applications by allowing accurate review of color and monochrome mix images.
An Integrated Front Sensor built into the bezel of certain models performs calibrations automatically without the hassle of attaching and removing an external sensor. Our Multi-Series monitors use only a minimal amount of the display area when performing brightness and grayscale tone checks or DICOM Part 14 compliant calibration so you can continue to use the monitor without interference.
There are many options to choose from when selecting workstation and client hardware, and not all systems are the same when it comes to performance and reliability. With our many years of experience, Medical Imaging Technologies can help you choose what you need, help you find what you like, and combine both into a workflow solution unique to your facility.
Most importantly, what does your facility need to function within state regulation and performance expectations? Most modern day workstation hardware is quite fast and reliable, however there are still things to consider depending on the software being used and how it utilizes the hardware. For example, a workstation that pulls it's data from a local server seldom requires more than average memory and storage, where as one that uses Cloud-based applications may require quite a bit more memory than normal to function quickly and not upset users.
No longer do users need to get necessary information from the standard desktop computer.
Mobility plays a key role in how users consume information, and with so many great options it can make work more interesting and flexible.