VMW Monthly - April 1998 - ISSN 1388-722X


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Contents April 1998 Issue

 
atlantic
 
Hemodynamic model simulates interaction between coronary arteries and interventional equipment
How to rate health care sites on the Internet at their true value?
Russian medical expert joins American health care information systems integrator
Visible Human Datasets form ideal basis for "endoscopic virtuality"
Da Vinci simulates interactive catheter insertion for training purposes
Cath Works optimises interventional device design, testing and validation
 
Euromed
 
Exploring the medical applications of virtual reality techniques in the Dutch Cave
Medical image analysis transmission over the World Wide Web
How to gain Web based access to a DICOM image database?
 
hospital
 
The blessings of ANALYZE for Computed Aided Surgery and Radiation Treatment Planning
The grapes of VRASP: a story of natural fermentation through ANALYZE
 
industrial
 
EchoPlus imaging software defines acute brain infarction
CONVERGE data warehousing system runs on AViiON family of servers
Health care technology triumvirate offers turnkey support for American provider organisations
 
planet
 
"Tim-Tem" creates model for telemedical care on a Mediterranean isle
A concept for computer assisted image guided oral implant planning
From multiplanar reformation to virtual endoscopy: a survey of medical visualisation techniques
 
snap
 
Sale of shares offers CompuMed wings to develop digital densitometer
ITIS'98 - The philosophical background displayed
Cooperative ConNEXTions supports telemedicine services among others
Lucent Technologies markets videoconferencing system developed by AG Communication Systems
 

Leads April 1998 Issue

 
atlantic
 
Hemodynamic model simulates interaction between coronary arteries and interventional equipment
Full Article Coronary artery problems constitute a delicate matter. Traditionally, interventional cardiologists use percutaneous treatment to cut and remove arterial plaque, but they often experience severe difficulties in predicting the final outcome of the operation. Additionally, the assessment of the specialised equipment is still based on crude models of the coronary arterial tree. In order to refine the process of coronary revascularisation, the Medical Simulation Group at the Institute of Systems Science (ISS) in Singapore has a plan to develop a computable hemodynamic model which will assist in the pre-treatment planning of complex cases by means of realistic simulation in virtual reality.
How to rate health care sites on the Internet at their true value?
Full Article The search for valid health information on the Internet may not turn out to be all that easy as it looks. Health professionals as well as patients experience great difficulties to orient themselves, surfing the wide ocean of health care data, available on the Web. Dr. Alejandro R. Jadad and Anna Gagliardi, two researchers at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, have tried to make a survey of Internet resources that review and rate Web sites, providing health information. They were able to identify forty seven rating instruments that are used for validation purposes but discovered that many of them were incompletely developed. This has led them to ask whether such instruments should exist in the first place, whether they measure exactly what they claim to measure, or whether they lead to more good than harm.
Russian medical expert joins American health care information systems integrator
Full Article The world-renowned health care expert, Victor S. Dorodny, has been appointed as Director of Health Affairs for Aviant Information Inc., a systems integration and consulting services corporation. In this newly created function, Dorodny will offer tactical and strategic guidance in order to support the company's health care information systems customers. Aviant already combines an experienced staff of medical professionals as well as networking specialists to develop effective solutions which improve information access for health care organisations all over the world.
Visible Human Datasets form ideal basis for "endoscopic virtuality"
Full Article Dr. Richard Robb is one of the leading experts in the Biomedical Imaging Resource at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, involved with the progressive development of virtual endoscopy (VE) as a diagnostic and clinical tool. He actually prefers the term "endoscopic or computed virtuality" since it specifies more accurately the essence of simulated visualisation of patient specific organs based on computer processing of 3-D image datasets. The current availability of the Visible Human Datasets (VHD) from the National Library of Medicine offers a tremendous opportunity to turn VE into a reliable alternative for real invasive endoscopy, allowing viewing angles that up till now were inaccessible. True, a number of technical problems still need to be solved concerning image resolution and rendering, segmentation, registration and appropriate preparation of the data in order to refine and validate the simulation for routine clinical use. Very soon however, physicians will boldly enter regions of the human body which no eye has ever beheld.
Da Vinci simulates interactive catheter insertion for training purposes
Full Article Among the multiple medical simulation projects, set up at the Institute of Systems Science in Singapore, researchers have also developed an interactive simulator for visual navigation of a catheter insertion. A varied choice of patient models, lesions and interventional tools is provided to enhance the realistic impact of the performance. The 'da Vinci' project will support surgeons in their training efforts and their pre-operative planning, as well as designers in the building of appropriate devices for medical use.
Cath Works optimises interventional device design, testing and validation
Full Article Interventional device manufacturing has become a very lucrative business, emerging from the high-technology development in the medical field of minimal invasive surgery. Yet, designers face some serious problems which are causing development costs increase due to both faulty communication with the physicians and absence of a realistic environment to test and validate their concepts. In addition, new products are submitted to a long cycle of designing and testing before they can actually be used in the hospital. The Cath Works project, set up by the Institute of Systems Science in Singapore, therefore aims at improving the effectiveness of mechanical prototyping with application of the advanced technologies of computer visualisation, engineering analysis as well as design and image processing.
 
Euromed
 
Exploring the medical applications of virtual reality techniques in the Dutch Cave
Full Article The Parallel Scientific Computing and Simulation Group (PSCS) of the University of Amsterdam is one of the main partners in Euromed, the project which aims at enhancing and standardising visualisation techniques to be used in telemedicine applications throughout Europe. Over the last ten years, the PSCS group has gathered an impressive expert knowledge with regard to the modelling and simulation of Dynamic Complex Systems as well as to the efficient mapping of these simulations to High Performance Computing (HPC) Systems. Dr. Jaap Kaandorp and researcher Robert Belleman are proud to dispose of an excellent infrastructure, among which the recently installed advanced Cave Automatic Virtual Environment (CAVE) plays an important role in the 3-D visualisation of medical data and in the creation of simulation techniques for surgical applications.
Medical image analysis transmission over the World Wide Web
Full Article The Laboratory for Clinical and Experimental Image Processing (LKEB) at the Medical Centre of the University of Leiden is actively supporting the specific mission of the Euromed project to enable doctors at remote locations to access advanced medical imaging analysis software, available at various specialised centres in Europe. Responsible project leader at Leiden, Rob van der Geest, is working on the establishment of a protocol, allowing the local doctor to receive and even control the result of the image analysis over the internet in graphical format. The elements needed to fulfil the required data transfer are a network connection and protocol, known as the generally available X-Windows System; a powerful software package, like for instance MASS; a DICOM-PACS archival system, and a special WWW-page. The correct implementation of all these ingredients produces the desired time- and-money-saving connectivity.
How to gain Web based access to a DICOM image database?
Full Article At the University of Joensuu in Finland, the researchers Tuomo Kauranne and Alexander Kolesnikov have developed a tool for interfacing a Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) image database with the World Wide Web (WWW). As one of the four telemedicine platforms, the University of Joensuu is a major partner in the Euromed project with regard to remote medical analysis applications. The research team has chosen to work with a server-side HTML-embedded script language, called PHP/FI, which allows items in the database to be created, retrieved, updated and deleted. To use the WWW-DICOM system, the end-user runs his WWW-browser requesting the PHP/FI scripts via a query form to start consultation or manipulation of the required medical images.
 
hospital
 
The blessings of ANALYZE for Computed Aided Surgery and Radiation Treatment Planning
Full Article The successful marriage between high-performance computing and sophisticated imaging systems for the production of multi-modality three-dimensional images of top quality, has created an ideal opportunity for significant improvement in pre-operative surgical and treatment planning, as well as in post-operative evaluation. For more than a decade, surgeons at Mayo Clinic in Rochester have been developing, using and assessing the ANALIZE software system for interactive visualisation, manipulation and measurement of 3-D medical images. At present, over 3000 medical scientists, physicians and surgeons in more than 200 institutions throughout the world are working with ANALYZE for Computer Aided Surgery (CAS) and Radiation Treatment Planning (RPT) in various applications such as craniofacial, orthopedic and neurosurgery planning as well as radiation therapy planning. Undoubtedly, ANALYZE will result in minimised patient risk and morbidity and in a substantial reduction of health care costs.
The grapes of VRASP: a story of natural fermentation through ANALYZE
Full Article The ANALYZE software system developed by the Biomedical Imaging Resource (BIR) at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester has rendered such tremendous services for both surgical planning and post-operative evaluation in different medical fields, that it has been split up into a library of functions, called AVW or A Visualisation Workshop. The AVW library provides a ready extensibility as well as a renewed development and implementation of advanced imaging algorithms, procedures and customised applications. In turn, AVW has led to the creation of a Virtual Reality Assisted Surgery Programme, known as VRASP, allowing the surgeon to benefit from the ANALYZE and AVW assets in the hospital operating room (OR) itself, for the optimisation of planning, rehearsal and, eventually, even surgical intervention.
 
industrial
 
EchoPlus imaging software defines acute brain infarction
Full Article The General Electric Medical Systems Company is a notorious developer of medical imaging equipment. The EchoPlus diffusion-weighted imaging software constitutes the latest addition to its product's assortment and has recently been cleared by the American Food and Drug Administration. The package has been designed for the company's Signa Horizon and Signa Horizon LX magnetic resonance (MR) imaging systems in order to facilitate the detection and specification of brain tissue changes for particular disease conditions.
CONVERGE data warehousing system runs on AViiON family of servers
Full Article Health care organisations are desperately in search of integrating information systems to meet their challenging data management demands. Data General Corporation and Atlanta-based Systems Techniques, Inc. (STI) have decided to work together in order to market STI's CONVERGE Integrated Data Warehousing System with Data General's AViiON family of Intel-based servers, which support Unix as well as Microsoft NT. The alliance between both companies should provide a delivering answer to the crying need for an end-to-end data warehousing solution for the health care industry.
Health care technology triumvirate offers turnkey support for American provider organisations
Full Article Three expert companies in health care technology have united their forces in order to deliver a technological and administrative infrastructure to provider-based managed care organisations across the United States. The infrastructure will include Data General's NT AViiON enterprise servers and CLARiiON storage systems, Health System Technologies' Trillium Managed Care Information System and, Innovative Outsourcing's technology and administrative services. Together, the service provider and the two vendors will supply a competitive and efficient outsourcing solution for the health care industry.
 
planet
 
"Tim-Tem" creates model for telemedical care on a Mediterranean isle
Full Article The Greek isle of Tilos and the Department of Surgery of the University of Pisa have been respectively selected as the operative and the scientific as well as organisational seats for the "Tim-Tem" experiment. This Tilos Medicine & Tele-medicine project has been set up to create an exportable model for first aid telematic assistance during emergencies on European isles and in isolated regions with no hospital. The programme runs from October 1997 until June 1999 and consists of three phases. First, the project members will execute a clinical and ecographic mapping of the local population which will permit access to a "Dispatch System" in the second stage. Finally, a number of operative telemedicine applications are planned. As an additional purpose, the experiment aims at improving health care facilities in the tourist season.
A concept for computer assisted image guided oral implant planning
Full Article In the Laboratory for Medical Imaging Research (ESAT) at the University of Leuven, Professor Verstreken and his team are designing a system for oral implant surgery planning. The initial input consists of Computer Tomographies (CT) of the jaws, combined with three-dimensional surface rendered models of the bone. These images are integrated in a specific kind of Computer Aided Design (CAD) implant models. The thus obtained views are exported to an HTML format in order to be shown in the operating theatre, with use of netscape as an HTML browser. The final step to be taken includes the interactive guidance during surgery, which is currently being investigated.
From multiplanar reformation to virtual endoscopy: a survey of medical visualisation techniques
Full Article At the University of Erlangen in Germany, some thorough research is going on with regard to the rapid developments in medical imaging. The academic experts, Markus Blank, Ralf Petzold and Willi Kalender have given an account of the progressive improvements in visual data rendering which finally have resulted in virtual endoscopy (VE). VE presents itself as a powerful tool that might partly substitute the invasive process of conventional endoscopy in the near future. The so-called fly through procedure allows the physician to conduct a more effective examination providing better comfort for both patient and operator.
 
snap
 
Sale of shares offers CompuMed wings to develop digital densitometer
Full Article CompuMed, a Californian company, specialises in providing solutions to medical problems with the aid of computer technology. Recently, a sale of 8750 shares has been completed for $875.000 to a group of institutional and accredited investors. The proceeds of the sale will enable the company to accomplish further developments to their digital OsteoView(TM) densitometer.
ITIS'98 - The philosophical background displayed
Full Article It's kind of hard to imagine but some of you might still have some doubts about whether attending the first International Conference on the Telemedical Information Society really would be worth the while. Well, here is your last chance to shake off your scepticism and to join a fascinating discussion platform that will explore the tremendous potential of a revolutionary and creative approach to health care on the verge of the 21st century. Just be sure to be there in Amsterdam on this month's 21st !
Cooperative ConNEXTions supports telemedicine services among others
Full Article In the USA, two regional transmission and generation cooperatives are partnering in a new regional services company (ServCo), called Cooperative ConNEXTions LLC. This strategic support services company will provide a wide range of facilities to its customers, such as for instance telephone, television, Internet, system monitoring, equipment financing, appliance repair and service, home security with medical alert, and interactive learning. Also telemedicine will form an important part of the package.
Lucent Technologies markets videoconferencing system developed by AG Communication Systems
Full Article AG Communication Systems, based in Phoenix, manufactures advanced telecommunication products and provides access, wireless and intelligent network services. In order to commercialise the ATIUM VIA 188® video codec and network management and scheduling software, the company has signed an agreement with Lucent Technologies, a public and private network builder and supplier of communications systems and software as well as microelectronics components, headquartered at Murray Hill. Together, both companies will be able to deliver, among other services, the computing capacity for the supply of telemedicine applications.
 

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© 2006, Genias Benelux

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