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New iPad App Allows for Sharing Radiology Teaching Files


I wanted a better way to view and present medical images, so my colleagues and I created an iPad app.

Growing up, I would occasionally go to work with my father who was a radiologist. The traditional sound of hanging film was enjoyable - until I became a radiologist and had to endure film review sessions during training hanging film, which is a tedious task. This, combined with the need to review imaging files on the go and the inconvenience of having to hover over my colleagues during board review sessions, encouraged me to figure out a way of utilizing my iPad more efficiently to view and present medical images.

Sure, you could upload your images to a jump drive or store them in a digital file locker, but this too can be cumbersome and these files are still not as accessible as they should be. Additionally, who is going to pull out a laptop on a subway or carry it around during teaching rounds, or even to a patient's room? That's where the iPad comes in handy.

So a few of my colleagues and I tried to address all of these issues when we created the ViewboxTM application. With future devices and integration by Apple, it will eventually be possible for radiologists to both dictate film and operate in a radiology workstation hands-free. This is just the beginning.

According to a survey compiled by Viewbox Holdings LLC, nearly 47 percent of physicians use mobile devices to view teaching cases, and a large number of this demographic are utilizing an Apple device. The research also demonstrated that users would like the ability to manipulate their teaching files for presentation from their mobile devices, which is currently available through the Viewbox application. These numbers are expected to grow as more business applications are developed and released, and due to the recent FDA approval of the iPad for viewing medical images.

Viewbox is a newly released free application for the iPad that allows users mobile access to view, share, and present medical images. Created with the radiologist and medical professional in mind, Viewbox allows easy portability for your teaching file images in the workplace as well as the classroom. Radiologists won’t have to use multiple storage devices for images.

Viewbox offers radiology trainees and other medical professionals a method to create and share image teaching files which are the bedrock of radiology learning and education. In light of the recently reported controversy surrounding alleged cheating by U.S. radiology trainees and purported use of recalled exam questions, Viewbox offers trainees an alternative method to create and share image teaching files with the ability to link and reference their files with peer reviewed sources.

Users can search, view, and edit images from several sources on their iPads including their Apple Photo Stream accounts through the iCloud, Google Picasa, Dropbox, and the Radiology Society of North America’s MIRC Server. 

Luther B. Adair II, MD, is an abdominal imaging fellow at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. 

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