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By Erik L. Ridley, AuntMinnie staff writer
November 8, 2010

Welcome to the first installment of this year's Road to RSNA preview of the RSNA 2010 conference in Chicago. For the second year in a row, we're providing a modality-by-modality overview of the most important scientific sessions, poster presentations, and educational exhibits to serve as your guide to events at McCormick Place.

PACS enthusiasts will have a plethora of educational opportunities to choose from as they plan their conference schedules.

The utility of mobile technology -- such as smartphones and Apple's latest wonder device, the iPad -- is a particularly hot topic this year. In several talks, researchers will present data and experiences that speak to the potential of this device in radiology.

Image sharing also remains at the forefront of PACS investigations, as researchers continue to address this critical aspect of digital image management. In other notable areas of emphasis, increasing concern over the risk of repetitive stress injuries for radiologists has led to a renewed focus on ergonomics in the digital reading room.

Check out our preview below of a selection of PACS-related scientific papers, posters, and educational exhibits at this year's RSNA meeting. And also stay tuned for more radiology informatics coverage in our upcoming Healthcare Informatics and Advanced Visualization Road to RSNA sections.

Refresher courses

As in previous years, a full slate of PACS refresher courses will be available for RSNA attendees. Those seeking to learn more about new image acquisition modalities might be interested in a refresher course titled "Informatics in Practice" on Sunday, November 28. Given in partnership with the Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM), the session will include talks on data management and workflow, CT imaging, and digital mammography (2:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m.; RC126A, B, and C; Room S403B).

For those with a commercial bent, a Sunday course aims to educate radiology IT vendors on how they can help their customers achieve "meaningful use" from their radiology IT investments -- and qualify for stimulus funding (2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m., IX11, Room S103AB).

Enterprise imaging is the topic of a refresher course on Monday, November 29, also given in partnership with SIIM. Attendees will learn about managing images from pathology, cardiology, and other nonradiology areas (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m.; RC226A, B, and C; Room S403A).

But that's not the only PACS-oriented refresher course on Monday morning. In a session on IT management for radiologists, RSNA attendees will be able to take in talks on understanding your IT organization, bridging the gap between the radiologist and IT, and how a radiologist can communicate effectively with IT (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m.; RC230A, B, and C; Room S504AB).

Later Monday morning, a second Informatics in Practice refresher course -- given again in partnership with SIIM -- will shed light on key issues such as redesigning the radiology reading environment, changing PACS, and advanced imaging techniques (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.; II22A, B, and C; Room S501ABC).

Radiologists also won't want to miss a Monday afternoon course on how to add millions of dollars to your practice by demonstrating meaningful use of healthcare IT (3:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m., IX21, Room S402AB).

PACS quality control is the topic for a Tuesday afternoon refresher course, where attendees will hear presentations on the radiologist's role in the image quality process, data integrity, and implementing a display quality control program (4:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m.; RC426A, B, and C; Room E351).

Anyone interested in image exchange -- and who isn't these days? -- will want to get an early start on Thursday, December 2. Talks on the XDS-I Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) profile, practical applications of XDS-I, and image CD importation are scheduled for this morning refresher course (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m.; RC630A, B, and C; Room S102C).

Scientific and Educational Presentations
Image metadata manager uses semantics to retrieve similar images
Sunday, November 28 | 12:30 p.m.-1:00 p.m. | LL-INS-SU2A | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, researchers from Stanford University in Stanford, CA, will describe how their biomedical image metadata manager (BIMM) can retrieve similar images via semantic features.
Evaluating the iPad's role in radiology
Monday, November 29 | 10:50 a.m.-11:00 a.m. | SSC08-03 | Room S402AB
In this scientific session, researchers from the University of Maryland in Baltimore will take a close look at the device generating significant buzz in the radiology community: Apple's iPad.
Wiimote yields both comfort and speed for radiologists
Monday, November 29 | 11:00 a.m.-11:10 a.m. | SSC08-04 | Room S402AB
Can an image viewer driven by a Nintendo Wii remote hold its own against a clinical PACS workstation? Researchers from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City will share their surprising results in this session.
A YouTube model for radiology image sharing
Monday, November 29 | 11:10 a.m.-11:20 a.m. | SSC08-05 | Room S402AB
In this paper presentation, researchers from Australia will present a medical image sharing concept based on the same technology utilized by social networks.
Smartphones may support mobile teleradiology
Monday, November 29 | 11:20 a.m.-11:30 a.m. | SSC08-06 | Room S402AB
An Italian team will present promising results from using smartphones for mobile reading of CT and MR exams.
Regional PACS connectivity offers benefits to trauma patients
Monday, November 29 | 11:25 a.m.-11:35 a.m. | VE21-10 | Room N227
In this paper presentation, researchers from the University of Washington in Seattle will share their experience in using the Internet and CDs to transfer images of trauma patients.
Research weighs iPad clinical utility
Monday, November 29 | 11:30 a.m.-11:40 a.m. | SSC08-07 | Room S402AB
In this scientific paper presentation, a study team from the University of Maryland in Baltimore will describe how the iPad fared when used to evaluate a screening chest x-ray for tuberculosis.
Importing outside studies into PACS cuts repeat imaging
Monday, November 29 | 11:35 a.m.-11:45 a.m. | VE21-11 | Room N227
A study team from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston will show how importing external images from CDs can reduce duplicate imaging.
iPhone provides high image quality, but low speed
Monday, November 29 | 11:50 a.m.-12:00 p.m. | SSC08-09 | Room S402AB
A research team from Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston found both advantages and disadvantages to using an iPhone for preliminary diagnosis of chest CT pulmonary embolism studies.
Stroke management? There's an app for that
Monday, November 29 | 12:15 p.m.-12:45 p.m. | LL-INS-MO2A | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, a Japanese research team will report the benefits of i-Stroke, an iPhone application that aids the management of acute ischemic stroke.
Tool may improve breast imaging interpretation
Monday, November 29 | 12:45 p.m.-1:15 p.m. | LL-INS-MO1B | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, Stanford University researchers will point to efficiency gains from their annotated breast map (ABM) tool for interpreting breast imaging studies.
Human resources matters vital to RIS/PACS success
Tuesday, November 30 | 12:15 p.m.-12:45 p.m. | LL-INS-TU2A | Lakeside Learning Center
A Thai research team will tackle the human resources requirements necessary for a secure RIS/PACS in this poster presentation.
Automated image analyzer tool may boost image searching
Tuesday, November 30 | 3:00 p.m.-3:10 p.m. | SSJ14-01 | Room S402AB
In this scientific session, researchers from Siemens Healthcare of Malvern, PA, will share their results from using an automated image parser to link report and image content.
Automatic segmentation algorithm yields workflow gains
Tuesday, November 30 | 3:20 p.m.-3:30 p.m. | SSJ14-03 | Room S402AB
Researchers from software giant Microsoft of Redmond, WA, will show an automated full-body CT segmentation algorithm that can provide access to quantitative information, among other benefits.
AIM standard added to commercial PACS workstation
Tuesday, November 30 | 3:30 p.m.-3:40 p.m. | SSJ14-04 | Room S402AB
A Stanford University team will present use of the Annotation and Image Markup (AIM) image metadata standard with Centricity RA1000 PACS workstation software from GE Healthcare of Chalfont St. Giles, U.K.
Importing outside studies into PACS is feasible, economical
Tuesday, November 30 | 3:40 p.m.-3:50 p.m. | SSJ14-05 | Room S402AB
In this paper presentation, researchers from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) will review their experience with importing external imaging studies into their PACS.
Research finds low error rate in teleradiology practice
Wednesday, December 1 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SSK09-01 | Room S402AB
An executive from teleradiology services provider Virtual Radiologic of Eden Prairie, MN, will present data on the accuracy of nearly 5 million preliminary interpretations rendered via teleradiology.
Timing of interpretation not an issue for reading accuracy
Wednesday, December 1 | 11:50 a.m.-12:00 p.m. | SSK09-09 | Room S402AB
In this scientific paper presentation, researchers from teleradiology services provider Virtual Radiologic of Eden Prairie, MN, will take a look at whether interpretation accuracy varies depending on whether it's early or late in a radiologist's shift.
Software helps rads spot differences in chest x-rays
Wednesday, December 1 | 12:15 p.m.-12:45 p.m. | LL-INS-WE2A | Lakeside Learning Center
Scottish researchers will show in this poster presentation how Photoshop can be used to help train radiologists to identify differences between radiographs.
Method extracts textual information from US images
Wednesday, December 1 | 12:15 p.m.-12:45 p.m. | LL-INS-WE3A | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, a University of Hong Kong research team will present its efforts to improve ultrasound image management by exploiting the images' textual information.
iPad offers potential in radiology
Wednesday, December 1 | 12:45 p.m.-1:15 p.m. | LL-INS-WE1B | Lakeside Learning Center
Researchers from Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, NY, will examine in this poster presentation how the iPad might aid radiology.
PACS can challenge radiologist-clinician relationships
Wednesday, December 1 | 3:30 p.m.-3:40 p.m. | SSM12-04 | Room S102D
In this scientific session, a team from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) will analyze why the adoption of PACS can challenge the role of radiologists.
PACS is used often and meaningfully
Wednesday, December 1 | 3:40 p.m.-3:50 p.m. | SSM12-05 | Room S102D
In this paper presentation, a team from Harvard Medical School in Boston will present data showing why enterprise PACS should, indeed, be considered "meaningful use" of healthcare IT.
Protected health information in images: It's not always where you'd expect it
Thursday, December 2 | 11:40 a.m.-11:50 a.m. | SSQ10-08 | Room S402AB
In this paper presentation, researchers from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City point out the potential risk of protected health information (PHI) embedded in medical images.
Using a risk analysis matrix to secure RIS/PACS
Thursday, December 2 | 12:45 p.m.-1:15 p.m. | LL-INS-TH1B | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, a research team from Thailand will present a risk analysis matrix for analyzing and managing security risks to RIS/PACS.
How much is too much for lossy compression of FFDM images?
Thursday, December 2 | 12:45 p.m.-1:15 p.m. | LL-INS-TH3B | Lakeside Learning Center
A Catholic University of Korea research team will present its research examining the visually lossless threshold for compressing full-field digital mammography (FFDM) images.
Taking care of PACS ergonomics
Education Exhibit | LL-MSE2674 | Lakeside Learning Center
A Spanish team will review the ergonomic issues associated with radiology in this educational exhibit.
Navigating the shift to a 3D PACS world
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1217-SUA | Lakeside Learning Center
In this exhibit, a team from the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia will discuss the need for PACS software that supports advanced 3D image manipulation -- and how it can be achieved.
Radiology's journey into the cloud
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1152-SUB | Lakeside Learning Center
A U.K. team will provide a "dummies" guide to cloud computing and virtualization technologies in this exhibit.
Document-based databases may offer advantages
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1144-TUA | Lakeside Learning Center
In this exhibit, researchers will discuss the advantages of document-based databases over traditional relational databases in PACS.
Exploring new image scrolling methods
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1212-TUA | Lakeside Learning Center
This research team will present visitors with an overview of different PACS and 3D workstation image scrolling techniques.
How much PACS storage do you need?
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1202-TUB | Lakeside Learning Center
This exhibit will introduce a Web-based tool to help users calculate how much storage volume is required for their PACS.
Change your input device, change your ergonomics
Education Exhibit | LL-INE1161-WEB | Lakeside Learning Center
In this exhibit, researchers will show how an alternate input device shows potential for reducing repetitive stress injuries in radiologists.

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