Philips elevates iSite PACS to role of digital facilitator

November 27, 2006

Philips Medical Systems has taken the concept of PACS to a 3D plane. The Dutch company featured its iSite PACS at the RSNA meeting as common ground for bringing together its digital imaging technologies.

Philips Medical Systems has taken the concept of PACS to a 3D plane. The Dutch company featured its iSite PACS at the RSNA meeting as common ground for bringing together its digital imaging technologies.

This may have been the goal of PACS from the beginning. But over the years, other functions have taken priority. The systems have been defined in terms of archiving and transmitting data, not connecting modalities.

"Interfacing and networking will kill you as you move into digital technologies," said Scott Burkhart, vice president of Philips general x-ray. "What we are doing is taking that out of the equation and making sure all our stuff is seamless."

The spur for this move came from the x-ray side of the business. Philips, like GE, Toshiba, and other vendors, is taking digital radiography into 3D, as rotational studies provide the foundation for volumetric reconstructions.

Last year, Philips introduced the MultiDiagnost Eleva R/F (radiography/fluoroscopy) system, which was capable of doing 180° scans. The C-arm-based product was configured with a 3D workstation to reconstruct the data. This year, the company wants to take these acquisitions into the multimodality arena via iSite.

"We will be able to take a general x-ray 3D image and compare it with a 3D CT image and compare that with 3D MR imaging," Burkhart said.

The goal is to improve workflow through unification of the 3D world. The tool for melding digital modalities is a PACS component called iSyntax that sends requested data from the iSite PACS to viewers on the network.

"It pushes out as much information as you need to see," he said. "It makes the deployment of medical imagery much more seamless and fluid."

This communications platform has the potential to transform the digital workspace into an environment that can accept a multimodality view of medicine, according to Burkhart.

"Once they make the mental shift from 2D to 3D, nobody will want to go back," he said.