Open, View, and Read DICOM .DCM Medical Images in Mac OS X & iOS with OsiriX
Files from medical imaging devices like MRI’s, ultrasound, PET, CT scans, etc come as a collection of .DCM files which will not open on their own through just any image or video application. No big deal, because I came across some pretty amazing software for Mac OS X and iOS called OsiriX that will render these DICOM files as a fully controllable and playable 3D movie. Not only can OsiriX view the DICOM files, but you can then export them either as static images in a variety of friendly formats like JPG and TIFF or even as QuickTime movies.
Download OsiriX DICOM Medical Image Viewer
- Get OsiriX for Mac OS X from the developers website (free)
- Download OsiriX for Mac OS X through the Mac App Store (free)
- OsirisX HD for iPad & iPhone ($30 from the iOS App Store)
In my case, these DICOM files came from an MRI. I’m just a curious patient, not a medical professional, but after paying the equivalent of a brand new midrange MacBook Pro to get an MRI, I wanted to be able to view the resulting MRI DICOM images on my Mac when I got home. OsiriX delivered in a far more impressive manner than I expected, it is one of the most interesting applications I’ve ever used. Considering how expensive everything else is in the American health care world, I was shocked to find out that it’s offered for free for Mac OS X and just $30 for iOS.
My doctor happened to be using an older Windows tablet – remember those? – but I can see OsiriX and iPads taking the healthcare world by storm in the very near future. In fact, this combination is already in use at some hospitals around the world, and you can watch a video below of surgeons using an iPad with MRI images within OsiriX during an operation.
OsiriX HD for iPad in use during surgery:
More screen shots and video:
And no, this has no relation to the teenager selling his kidney to buy an iPad 2.