Digital radiography is an environmentally friendly and high-quality alternative to analog X-ray imaging in veterinary medicine. Digital and analog imaging systems differ only in terms of image production and image display. Digital X-ray images are subject to the same laws of physics as conventional images. Instead of viewing film in a lightbox, digital images are visualized using a PC and monitor. Thus, the transition to digital radiography requires very few changes in the established workfow for veterinarians.
Digital images can be easily shared via email, for example for expert consultations. Pet owners appreciate being able to take home images on a CD.
If you are not interested in investing in a new X-ray machine at the moment, you can still profit from the excellent quality of digital X-ray images using your old X-ray equipment. Conventional X-ray equipment can be transitioned to digital by the addition of a flat panel detector and a medical display monitor.
Cost factor digital X-ray
How high are the costs of switching to digital radiology in veterinary medicine? What is the price for new digital X-ray equipment?
In the long run, investments in digital technology pay off in thriving practices. Clients value the improved quality of digital imaging and are willing to pay more. The amortisation rates for digital X-ray systems are shown here.
The ability to order X-rays from within the veterinary management system reduces administrative effort and saves valuable time. With the click of a button, you have instant access to patient records, can order X-rays, and retrieve images from the archive. Sharing X-ray images and documents via electronic storage media is easy and inexpensive.
Currently, two different digital X-ray systems exist: direct radiography (DR) and computed radiography (CR).
Digital direct radiography (DR) produces images of outstanding quality. A flat panel detector with of a large number of pixels acts as the image sensor. The detector converts X-ray beams into electrical impulses. The detector is connected to a computer and the image can be viewed immediately after exposure. There are also environmental benefits to using direct radiography. Chemicals are no longer needed to develop the X-ray film. Furthermore, clients appreciate the lower radiation doses for their pets. While the purchase price of direct digital equipment is higher than that of imaging plate (CR) systems, maintenance costs are much reduced.
DR systems can build upon existing conventional X-ray equipment. Digital retrofitting does not involve modification of the X-ray machine or X-ray unit. The system‘s Auto Exposure Detection (AED) works without changes to the running system or cable connections. The new 35 x 43 cm X-ray detectors are designed to fit perfectly into the Bucky tray of existing X-ray units. Direct radiography systems have very high throughput rates for X-ray processing.
Choose the digital X-ray system (DR) that meets your needs:
Amadeo V mini II for the small animal practice: Digital veterinary X-ray system with flat table top + monitor with X-ray software
Amadeo V nano II: Space-saving X-ray system for standard wall socket outlet operation with floating table top
Amadeo V Systems: A complete DR X-ray system including patient positioning table with floating tabletop
Medici DR Systems: Flat panel (DR) retrofit kit for your existing X-ray system
Leonardo DR mini II: Portable digital radiology system in a custom-made suitcase for mobile use in stables and clinics
Leonardo DR nano: Amazingly light, portable DR X-ray system in a backpack
X-ray inspection using imaging plates functions with cassettes of the same size and shape as conventional film radiography. After the normal X-ray procedure, the cassette is placed into a X-ray scanner and read out.
Digital images are generated, saved and available for viewing on a computer monitor within seconds (computed radiography; CR). Imaging plate (IP) systems using cassettes are cost-saving X-ray solutions ideal for small animal practices or as a backup in a veterinary clinic. The existing X-ray unit must not be retrofitted. This technology produces high quality digital images.
Choose the perfect Divario product to complete your cost-effective CR system:
Divario CR-T2: Compact, high-speed desktop unit for standard X-ray examinations in veterinary medicine
Divario CR-TM: Compact, high-speed desktop unit for high-resolution images (50 μm) – ideal for small verterinary practices and clinics
Divario CR Software Package: Acquisition and diagnostic software for CR systems
Divario CR-F: Digital dental radiography system for veterinary medicine
Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS) are user-friendly software solutions for administering the production and use of X-ray images: from exposure to image analysis, archival storage and file sharing.
The software enables users to quickly and easily view and share images. Depending on the manufacturer, systems can include numerous advanced features including electronic fax, document management, operative reports and X-ray histories. Software modules for 3D reconstruction, surgical planning, voice recognition, and statistics can also be integrated.
PACS & Digital Image Processing in Veterinary Medicine
Switching to digital brings new possibilities for analysing and viewing X-rays. For example, special filters make soft tissues and bones visible on a single image. An array of special functions, including measurement tools for TPLO, TTA , MMP, distraction index and Buchanan‘s vertebral heart score, make routine diagnoses easier. Editing tools (e.g., arrows, circles, angles) can be used to explain findings to pet owners. As a result, owners can better understand diagnoses and treatment recommendations.
OR Technology‘s dicomPACS®vet can help make your veterinary practice go paperless. Using the dicomPACS®vet software, all images and documents (findings reports, medical history, faxes, etc.) are attached to the digital patient record and are instantly accessible. Ingenious archive and backup solutions guarantee quick access and data security in keeping with relevant international medical products laws. Furthermore, the software can easily be integrated into all common veterinary practice management systems. For more information about PACS for veterinarians, click here.
Immediate access to all digital patient records, including X-ray images, as well as documents from animal practices and clinics
Digital radiography saves time and materials
|No chemicals|| |
Some chemicals used in conventional radiography represent an occupational health hazard, are irritating and have an unpleasant odour
|No loss of information|| |
Lost hard copies of X-ray images and patient records are a thing of the past
|Space saving|| |
Archival storage of analog film material is costly in terms of space, money and time
|Efficient communication|| |
Efficient information exchange with experts via internet and DICOM cloud solutions; owner’s can be given X-rays images on a CD
|Improved diagnostics|| |
Excellent images and a multitude of image processing options
A PACS can be integrated with the veterinary administration software through special interfaces. All X-ray information is automatically saved in the electronic patient file. Double entries are a thing of the past and no information is lost.
Imaging equipment for X-ray, ultrasound and MRI can be integrated into the existing computer network. Furthermore, faxes and other digital documents can be attached to the patient record. With the appropriate software solution, all information for a given patient is available at the click of a button and can be shared with other caregivers. The digital coordination of all data pertaining to a patient means that the full medical record can be accessed for many years in the future.
Existing hardware can readily be integrated into the new system. Additional components such as printers, X-ray film scanners and other hardware can be purchased and integrated into the network at a time. Please consult your PACS provider concerning the specifications and requirements for servers, work stations and monitors.