Diagnostic imaging, information technology

View medical images on iPhone

25 July 2007

Heart Imaging Technologies (HeartIT) has announced that medical images can now be viewed on Apple's new iPhone.

Physicians can simply click on a web link on the phone sent via email by one of their colleagues, enter their password, and view medical images. They can even put their colleagues on speakerphone and carry on a medical consultation while simultaneously browsing through the imaging results.

HeartIT has developed a system, called WebPAX, based on web technologies that allows DICOM-based imaging to be viewed on devices with a web browser.

Browsing medical images on the iPhoneViewing medical images traditionally requires dedicated expensive workstations, which in turn are connected to very expensive proprietary picture archiving communications and storage (PACS) systems. In order to view medical images, physicians must literally drive or walk to one of these workstations. Recent advances in World Wide Web browser technologies and the web sites that utilize their rich features, collectively referred to as Web 2.0, are challenging these expensive and cumbersome proprietary approaches.

Medical images displayed in a web browser have previously been of lower quality and therefore had limited diagnostic utility. This technology is the first to provide physicians with the ability to drill-down and view medical images, including movies, on a hand-held device.

"Patient privacy is obviously a critically important issue on the internet," said Brent Reed, HeartIT's Director of Software Development. "Fortunately, medical privacy concerns can be addressed using the same encryption technologies employed by online banking and credit card transactions."

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