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Medical selfies: photos with a purpose

Selfies, photos you take of yourself using a smartphone, are no longer a craze; they are a way of life. Usually, however, these photos serve little purpose besides entertainment. That may be about to change.

DICOM Grid, an open cloud platform for medical imaging applications, has released “medical selfie,” a new feature available through its mobile optimized medical image management platform. Using the feature, patients and care providers can upload medical pictures taken on an iOS device and securely share them with physicians.

“The ability to quickly send a picture is especially critical in trauma situations, or frankly just to monitor ongoing care,” says Morris Panner, CEO of DICOM Grid. “For example, patients or referring physicians can snap a shot of a burn, wound, or other injury and share it with a specialty provider in minutes. A physician can view the picture through our secure portal to determine a treatment plan and advise whether or not the issue requires an in-person visit.”

The medical selfie feature facilitates real-time sharing of “visible light” imagery in a HIPAA secure environment. Commonly used in dermatology and wound care, visible light imagery can be assessed without special equipment. In addition to still pictures, patients are also able to share diagnostic imaging and related data.

“As a physician who performs online patient consultations, tools like medical selfies help to streamline the telemedicine process,” says Dr. Rourke Stay, user of DICOM Grid and Founder of Lightbulb Radiology, an online destination for patients seeking second opinion services. “From a workflow standpoint, having images and pictures sent directly to my work list is great. These tools empower patients by enabling them to seamlessly transfer imaging data from their own iPhones into the hands of an expert consultant.”

Related reading:

Survey finds digital technology is changing the physician-patient relationship

10 benefits of telemedicine

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