General Information

DICOM and Standardization Efforts in Medicine

Over the last decades, information and communication technologies have become more and more integrated into all areas of healthcare. Such technologies facilitate an organization's work flows both in administrative areas and with regard to patient treatment. Patient and treatment data are managed via Hospital Information Systems and medical images are stored in digital archives and analysed on screens. Medical images may be sent electronically to remote medical experts, who can then evaluate them.

It is expected that the significance of computer-based technologies in medicine will increase further. In health informatics, there are a number of standardization efforts to enable communication between medical devices from different manufacturers. In the area of digital imaging, the DICOM standard (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine), which was first published in 1993, has become widely accepted.