Ricerca Barco

7 nov 2014

No pain, no gain?


No doubt about it, radiologists today are living the life of an athlete: they give 100% every day, practice long hours to read a growing number of studies; and, in doing so, they experience physical stress to the body, such as eye strain and neck and back pain. So, to avoid the risk of radiologists becoming worn out, I asked myself the question: What part can display technology play?

Find out how display ergonomics can streamline radiologist workflow and decrease occupational stress:

How do reading ergonomics affect those on the radiology front line? That’s a question many of us here have pondered quite often. When I attended the RSNA annual meeting two years ago, Eliot Siegel MD, a diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine professor and vice chairman of informatics at the University of Maryland, was very clear about this, saying that “there’s never been a more critical need for improving the ergonomics of the radiology reading room, as volume and complexity are at an all-time high.” 

That statement was greeted with gratitude by many within the radiology community – and, in fact, studies have shown that improving reading ergonomics can contribute to overall employee wellness and drive efficiencies by reducing injuries and absenteeism. Not to mention the gains in diagnostic accuracy... 

So, the key to creating the right tools for the most effective outcomes is designing systems that work the way radiologists want – and need – to work, every day. 

I believe there are three major display qualities that are all-important to increasing a radiologist’s performance: 

  1. Image quality: needless to say, display brightness, contrast, color/grayscale accuracy and luminance stability are all important factors in displaying the best image possible on screen. 
  2. Ambient lighting: tasked with reading dozens of studies per day in a dark environment, radiologists need more than just pixel-perfect images. Ambient lighting (such as keyboard and wall lights) helps reduce eye fatigue. 
  3. Display consolidation: it’s crucial to bring images of different modalities together on a single display, as it is disruptive to move from station to station. Additionally, the display should be designed to match the radiologist’s field of vision, eliminating side-to-side head and eye movements (which you can get with a multi-screen workstation). 

A multi-screen workstation requires side-to-side head and eye movements when reading images, resulting in neck and back pain and eye strain.

When designing our new diagnostic display, Coronis Uniti, we took all of these qualities into account to help radiologists take a giant leap forward in both performance and reading comfort.