DICOM

by Larry Emmott on August 22, 2005

in General,Radiography

Do you know what DICOM stands for? Look here: for the official site. However if you start surfing the site you will need an engineering degree to really understand it. ……BORING

However it is important that a dentist understand what Dicom is and how it applies to dentistry. Dicom, stands for, digital communication in medicine. It is an international standard, which was originally developed in 1984 for medical cat-scan type systems. It has grown to include digital x-rays (dx), visible light (vl) images and more.

This is important to dentistry for several reasons. First is the transfer of information. Dicom conformant systems will allow you to transfer digital images such as x-rays and patient photos to colleagues, specialists, universities or third parties even if they are using different software running on a different platform such as Windows to Mac. Conformance will also ensure the integrity of the information. In other words it will be easier to insure that the digital document is accurate and secure for proper diagnosis or legal documentation.  And finally what will be most significant to the majority of dentists is inter-compatibility between systems.

If the digital radiography system you choose or the digital image management system you choose is not Dicom conformant, you could be stuck with it for a loooong time. That is because it is not possible to accurately transfer digital images with attached data from one system to another in bulk unless they conform to a shared standard.

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