Teleradiology is the transmission of radiological patient images, such as x-rays, CTs, and MRIs, from one location to another for the purposes of sharing studies with other radiologists and physicians. Teleradiology is a growth technology given that imaging procedures are growing approximately 15% annually against an increase of only 2% in the specialized radiologist population.
Teleradiology improves patient care by allowing radiologists to provide services without actually having to be at the location of the patient. This is particularly important when a sub-specialist such as an MRI radiologist, neuro-radiologist, pediatric radiologist, or musculoskeletal radiologist is needed, since these professionals are generally only located in large metropolitan areas working during daytime hours. Teleradiology allows for trained specialists to be available 24/7.
Teleradiology utilizes standard network technologies such as the internet, telephone lines, wide area network, local area network (LAN) and the latest high tech being computer clouds. Specialized software is used to transmit the images and enable the radiologist to effectively analyze what can be hundreds of images for a given study. Technologies such as advanced graphics processing, voice recognition, artificial intelligence and image compression are often used in teleradiology. Through tele radiology and mobile DICOM viewers, images can be sent to another part of the hospital, or to other locations around the world.
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