components of PACS system

The PACS is made out of four main sections:

1. Image acquisition  

  • ultrasound
  • CR
  • MRI - magnetic resonance imaging
  • ditital format and DDR (direct digital radiography)

2. Display Workstations

  • based in imaging department, clinical area or the wardthe most interactive parts of the PACS system
    • Cathode ray tube (CRT) display monitors 
    • liquid crystal display (LCD) 
    • the resolution of monitor is expressed by the number of pixels 
  • the software tools are available for the users to manipulate the images

3. The network

  • is linking the components to allow interaction with each otherpacs
    • telephone/television cable
    • microwave
    • satellite

4. The archive storage

  • it houses the currently active data and historic data
  • it manages the long term storage and retrieval of the imaging data
    • archive copmosition
      •  demographic database
      • image database
      • archive server
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Advantages and limitations of PACS system

    • rapid access to previous images 
    • reduction of radiation dose due to elimination of repeates  
    • simultaneous review of images at the different work stations which improves the patient care and decision making
    • increase storage capacity
    • networking capabilities
    • allows a reduced staffing cost
    • no lost films
    • PACS is a computer based system - security is effected
    • requires compliance of staff
    • confidentiality of information needs to be respected in relation to data protection legislation
    • restricted viewing (monitors) needs to be set up in compliance with data protection legislation
    • vulnerabiltiy to phishing and viruses
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Artifacts - is any accidental inclusion within a radiographic image which can be caused at any stage during exposure and procesing of an image.

  • it can obscure diagnostic information or pathology
  • mimic anatomical or pathological appearances
  • impair image quality


  • image detector
  • software
  • object
  • Human


  • Exposure
  • Imaging plate
  • Plate reader
  • image processing
  • operator error
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