Real Time Radiology

Real Time Radiology

April 27, 2009 11:07 ET

Real Time Radiology: A North American First in Patient Care

First to Implement Canadian Association of Radiologists Compression Guidelines

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 27, 2009) - Real Time Radiology Inc. is pleased to announce that it is the first tele-radiology and radiology services company in North America to implement and utilize the Canadian Association of Radiologists (CAR) guidelines for image compression in a production environment. Real Time Radiology has been performing primary diagnosis using the new compression guidelines in a production environment since February 3, 2009.

Images are compressed using DICOM standards based JPEG 2000 upon receipt at the Real Time Radiology gateway. Images are stored, transmitted and displayed according to the compression levels outlined by the CAR and as summarized in the table below. Since the CAR guidelines are very specific to each modality and to specific acquisition techniques within each modality, the Real Time Radiology solution is tailored to adopt and apply the relevant compression levels in real time, based on information contained within the study.

Since implementing the compression guidelines, radiologists and producing sites have noticed tremendous improvements in exam transfer times without any degradation in image quality. The CAR compression standards have enabled tremendous improvements in turnaround time for image producing sites with limited bandwidth.


                 Table 1 - Compression Ratio by Modality

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                                 Slice Thickness less than 5mm, Negative or
Modality        JPEG 2000                         Missing Value From Header
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CR/DR                20:1
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CT                    8:1                                          LOSSLESS
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US                   12:1
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MR                   20:1
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NM                   11:1
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PET                                                                LOSSLESS
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XA                                                                 LOSSLESS
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MG                                                                 LOSSLESS
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RF                                                                 LOSSLESS
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SC                                                                 LOSSLESS
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Canada Health Infoway funded the work that lead to the establishment of the CAR standards. The studies were conducted by Dr. David Koff, who now serves as Chief and Chair of Radiology at McMaster University Medical Centre of Hamilton Health Sciences.

"The quick adoption of compression guidelines issued by the Canadian Association of Radiologists will create efficiencies by reducing the duration of transmission times by up to 70 per cent and reducing the demand for storage," said Richard Alvarez, President and CEO, Canada Health Infoway. "Infoway will continue to promote the adoption of these compression standards among facilities and repositories that store diagnostic images."

"The establishment and application of these compression standards is a significant advancement in the field of radiology. As a company, Real Time Radiology is standards driven in its provision of radiology services to clients and we aspire to the application of the latest standards of benefit to Canadian radiologists and the image producing facilities they serve. We are pleased to be leading the way relative to the adoption of these standards", said Greg Butler, Chairman of Real Time Radiology.

"Such advancements help Real Time Radiology provide Canadian image producers and image readers with the best guaranteed report turnaround times for receipt of signed final reports and the highest service levels available in the industry today. This advancement is now an integral aspect of our overall radiology services offering", stated Ian Maynard, CEO of Real Time Radiology.

Real Time Radiology Inc., is the largest, all Canadian, tele-radiology and radiology services company in the country, supporting Canadian on-site radiologists and the image producers they serve, with round-the-clock, backup radiology coverage from other Canadian radiologists licensed in their jurisdiction. The service is available coast-to-coast, 365 days a year, on a 24x7 basis. Available at www.realtimeradiology.com.

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