Workstations: Taking clinical utility up a notch
These clinical workhorses are gaining in strength, with enhancements debuting at RSNA for more complex surgery planning such as orthopedic measurement and templating and trending reports for examining outcomes as well as advanced search tools, dynamic worklists, security management and improvements in procedural workflow.

GE Healthcare (Booth #2700) is showcasing its Centricity AW (Advantage Workstation) software that provides interactive 3D visualization and analysis to the Centricity PACS. This is a new software that is being added to PACS workstations to facilitate improved workflow, GE said. Images can be read and manipulated on any GE PACS workstation in the facility, so the user does not need to begin at one workstation, move to another and then return to the first.

Cedara Software Corp. (Booth #6513) is featuring a suite of new PACS-friendly, clinical workflow products at RSNA this year. Including Cedara OrthoWorks is a family of digital products that enable radiologists to service orthopedic groups and orthopedic clinics to go filmless. Powerful customized viewing and planning protocols allow surgeons to view and plan the way they want. Surgeons can now conveniently perform all standard orthopedic measurements and templating, either locally or remotely over the web. OrthoWorks' multimodality feature provides powerful viewing presets that allow clinicians to render 3D studies with just a few mouse clicks.

New this year is the Cedara OrthoWorks Spine Analyzer, which the company calls the most advanced spinal planning application to date. Spine Analyzer lets spine surgeons and radiologists analyze cervical or lumbar spine flexibility, and check posture or deformities of the spine. Surgeons can use the system's semi-automated spinal vertebra anatomy detection feature to significantly reduce planning time while applying standard spinal measurements in less time. OrthoWorks Spine Analyzer automatically populates valuable clinical patient data into OrthoWorks Care Manager.

Cedara OrthoWorks Care Manager, Cedara said, is the first clinical data management system designed specifically for orthopedic surgeons, hospital administrators, and implant manufacturers who want to manage clinical data in orthopedics, perform multi-center studies, and track clinical outcomes. Today orthopedic surgeons have to keep manual records of orthopedic surgery and separate records of follow-up care and recovery. These conventional techniques make it almost impossible to discover the trends and statistical results of the cause and effect. With OrthoWorks Care Manager, users now have vital outcome statistics at their fingertips.

In addition, Cedara is featuring Cedara I-ReadMammo that integrates CAD for ultrasound, MRI and mammography.  Its versatility enables the user to read any vendor's digital mammography images side by side with prior digitized images. Further, Cedara is showing a few more surprises at its booth it didn't want to discuss prior to showtime.

Philips Medical Systems (Booth #7113) is showcasing its release 10 workstation product that incorporates 3D imaging. The software plug-in, View Forum, includes a primary role of volume rendering, 3D reconstruction and post-processing for CT and MR data. The list of functionality includes advanced search tools, secured login devices (either card-based or fingerprint enabled) and dynamic worklists.

Additionally, Philips is showing an integrated RIS product with the workstation. EasyAccessRIS is an integrated RIS-PACS product first shown this year at RSNA. It is a complete RIS worklist driven product. The name of the new system will be revealed at the meeting.

TeraRecon (Booth #4343) is unveiling AquariusNET Server 1.5, which features an enhanced efficient database designed to emphasize HIPAA-friendly features such as security management and enhanced logging. Other features to be introduced include Enhanced Curved Planar Reformat, bone removal, perspective 3D and a "Remote Consult" mode whereby one client user can take control of another client. The company's Aquarius Workstation 3.4 includes new segmentation, region-growing, updated reporting, and "on the fly" stenosis analysis tools. Improved procedural workflow has been introduced for cardiac and vascular applications. A new addition to the Aquarius product line is a server to host advanced image processing applications "off line." The first of these to be implemented will be the iCAD computer-aided detection technology for CT Lung scans. A clinical trial for the iCAD product is scheduled to begin in Q4.

The company's AquariusGATE image routing and compression tool has been enhanced with scheduling by day of the week and time of the day.