Magazine article Information Today

iPods: The New Prescription for Viewing Medical Images?

Magazine article Information Today

iPods: The New Prescription for Viewing Medical Images?

Article excerpt

These days, iPods seem to be everywhere. There's no doubt that you've seen them around the necks of people on the street and in the gym. But if you thought iPods were only for listening to music and playing podcasts, think again. The tiny devices are now making an appearance in doctors' offices and hospitals around the world.

Physicians are using Macintosh's open source OsiriX software (available for free download at http://www .apple.com/downloads/macosx/imaging_3d/osirix.html) to store and share medical images on their iPods. OsiriX was developed by Osman Ratib, professor and chief of nuclear medicine at the University Hospital of Geneva, and Antoine Rosset, a radiologist from the University of Geneva.

Ratib and Rosset decided to develop the software for the Macintosh platform "because of the high performance of Mac graphics," Ratib said. "The purpose is to be able to quickly and interactively manipulate very large data sets in 3-D, 4-D, and even 5-D."

And that's where the iPod comes in handy. "One day I realized I have an iPod that has 40 [GB] of storage on it," Ratib said. "It's twice as big as my disk on my laptop ... why don't I use it as a hard disk for storing medical images? …

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