Server-side rendering sends diagnostic quality images to any web browser on any computer--even a Windows XP laptop--with no download delay, in a new system feature from PACS vendor Viztek that will be shown at this year’s RSNA (Booth #7322).

The company’s new Exa PACS platform promises “true zero-footprint viewing” without the need to install a separate image viewer for either radiologists or referring physicians. Users can view any type of study, including breast tomosynthesis, PET, CT, echocardiography, and MRI. Organizations can either maintain on-site servers (with their choice of hardware and operating system) or use cloud-based servers. The PACS can also work with archives of images from other vendors, or with vendor-neutral archives.

Steve Deaton, vice president of sales, says other PACS vendors offer a zero-footprint “lite” viewer suitable for sharing images quickly with referring physicians, but Viztek is the first to supply high resolution images for diagnostic use without a separate viewer or a browser plugin. The company recently rewrote its PACS from scratch to take advantage of new coding technologies. The user views the image on the server, rather than having the DICOM data downloaded to the workstation, which Deaton says dramatically reduces the load on the network and also allows virtually no delay. “We are confident that this product can be used without a lag even over a home cable modem.”

As radiology groups and clinics join integrated health networks, IT departments are faced with absorbing a diverse collection of technology assets, from sophisticated PACS workstations to the PC that was on sale at Best Buy or recommended by the radiologist’s teenage nephew. The Exa PACS viewing capability can be used by all types of existing hardware, and will deliver diagnostic quality images to any high-resolution monitor, according to the vendor. Since there’s no software to install, it doesn’t conflict with other viewers that might also be in use.

An accompanying smartphone app allows radiologists to dictate notes directly into the patient’s record while viewing a study.

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