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        Tips and Guidelines for Buying a CR System

        A system which digitizes the X-ray images from fluorescence plates. The special cassette with the plate records the image. After the exposure the cassette is manually, or in some cases automatically transferred to the digital reader. The digital images are PACS compatible.

        Tips for Buying a CR System

        1. When purchasing new or used CR Systems, medical facilities should consider the following key factors: image plate throughput, cassette buffer size, and number of technologist terminals.

        2. The image quality of X-ray CR Imaging Systems is not as high as other more expensive Digital Radiography technologies, but the versatility a new or used CR system offers is desirable.

        3. Operating these systems is much like other Digital Radiography technologies, where versatility is traded off for increased speed.

        4. Radiology departments wanting a digital modality to replace film can often find that Computer Radiography CR has become a popular choice.

        5. Four categories of X-ray CR Imaging Systems readers are available: multi-plate readers, single-plate readers, desktop plate readers, and cassetteless readers:

        6. Busy areas, in which the CR cassettes can be simply dropped into the Computed Radiography CR reader and left there, require multi-plate readers.

        7. In single-plate readers, the reader must be empty before the next cassette is loaded because there is no buffer facility.

        8. Very-low-throughput facilities can use desktop units, which are the smallest readers with only the essential components.

        9. Cassetteless readers use a CR reader built into either a chest stand or a bucky table.

        10. Sometimes it is possible to get higher image quality at the price of slower image plate throughput.

        11. Cassette buffer size is extremely important for the multi-cassette loaders. It should be possible to place multiple technologist terminals next to each image reader. 12. All multiple readers should be networked, so a technologist can use any reader with any terminal.

        13. To facilitate future additions to any network, buyers should ensure compatibility with existing x-ray components and conformance with the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine 3.0 Standard.

        14. Suppliers should provide CR system buyers with DICOM conformance statements that explain what information objects, service classes, and data encoding are supported by their system. These are highly technical, and should be reviewed by specialists. All statements from all suppliers shoulduse the same format and the same vocabulary to facilitate comparisons.

        Questions for the Seller

        Before you purchase your CR System, we recommend you ask the seller the following questions:

        General

        • Does the system include a printer?
        • Does it include a multiformat printer?
        • Does the scanner include an Auto Loader?
        • Did this equipment pass the American College of Radiology (ACR) accreditation?

        Applications

        • Does it support general radiology?
        • Does it support orthopedics?
        • Does it support bone densitometry?
        • Is it usefull for the simulation of radiation therapy?
        • Does it support mammographic imaging?

        Performance

        • What is the system resolution in line pairs per mm?
        • What is the pixel size? Does it accept cassette size 35 x 43 cm?
        • What is the throughput of the system?
        • Are the cassetes fed one by one or in series/batches?
        • Does the system support DICOM 3.0 in all respects?
        • Does the system include a technician workstation?
        • Does the system include a process monitor for the technician?

        DICOM 3.0

        • Is it DICOM 3.0 compatible?
        • Printer? Export?
        • Import?
        • Work List?

        Tips and Guidelines for Buying a CR System

        A system which digitizes the X-ray images from fluorescence plates. The special cassette with the plate records the image. After the exposure the cassette is manually, or in some cases automatically transferred to the digital reader. The digital images are PACS compatible.

        Tips for Buying a CR System

        1. When purchasing new or used CR Systems, medical facilities should consider the following key factors: image plate throughput, cassette buffer size, and number of technologist terminals.

        2. The image quality of X-ray CR Imaging Systems is not as high as other more expensive Digital Radiography technologies, but the versatility a new or used CR system offers is desirable.

        3. Operating these systems is much like other Digital Radiography technologies, where versatility is traded off for increased speed.

        4. Radiology departments wanting a digital modality to replace film can often find that Computer Radiography CR has become a popular choice.

        5. Four categories of X-ray CR Imaging Systems readers are available: multi-plate readers, single-plate readers, desktop plate readers, and cassetteless readers:

        6. Busy areas, in which the CR cassettes can be simply dropped into the Computed Radiography CR reader and left there, require multi-plate readers.

        7. In single-plate readers, the reader must be empty before the next cassette is loaded because there is no buffer facility.

        8. Very-low-throughput facilities can use desktop units, which are the smallest readers with only the essential components.

        9. Cassetteless readers use a CR reader built into either a chest stand or a bucky table.

        10. Sometimes it is possible to get higher image quality at the price of slower image plate throughput.

        11. Cassette buffer size is extremely important for the multi-cassette loaders. It should be possible to place multiple technologist terminals next to each image reader. 12. All multiple readers should be networked, so a technologist can use any reader with any terminal.

        13. To facilitate future additions to any network, buyers should ensure compatibility with existing x-ray components and conformance with the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine 3.0 Standard.

        14. Suppliers should provide CR system buyers with DICOM conformance statements that explain what information objects, service classes, and data encoding are supported by their system. These are highly technical, and should be reviewed by specialists. All statements from all suppliers shoulduse the same format and the same vocabulary to facilitate comparisons.

        Questions for the Seller

        Before you purchase your CR System, we recommend you ask the seller the following questions:

        General

        • Does the system include a printer?
        • Does it include a multiformat printer?
        • Does the scanner include an Auto Loader?
        • Did this equipment pass the American College of Radiology (ACR) accreditation?

        Applications

        • Does it support general radiology?
        • Does it support orthopedics?
        • Does it support bone densitometry?
        • Is it usefull for the simulation of radiation therapy?
        • Does it support mammographic imaging?

        Performance

        • What is the system resolution in line pairs per mm?
        • What is the pixel size? Does it accept cassette size 35 x 43 cm?
        • What is the throughput of the system?
        • Are the cassetes fed one by one or in series/batches?
        • Does the system support DICOM 3.0 in all respects?
        • Does the system include a technician workstation?
        • Does the system include a process monitor for the technician?

        DICOM 3.0

        • Is it DICOM 3.0 compatible?
        • Printer? Export?
        • Import?
        • Work List?
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