Digital XRay and Software. Part 3: Benefits

Digital Radiography Benefits
There are a number of reasons to use digital xray. Benefits include less time taking xrays, decrease in radiation for your patients, environmentally friendly, immediate observation (with sensors only), cost effective (this is a bit tricky to measure but in general holds true), superior diagnostics, enhanced patient communication and involvement, enhanced professional correspondence, enhanced organization and storage,cannot be misplaced, and more.

Let's also not neglect that fact that as digital radiography takes over, offices with film based xrays will be perceived as being in the dark ages - fairly or unfairly.

Does the Software Matter?
In Part 1 of this series, we were very clear that all digital xray software provides the same xray quality. If so, why might we propose that you invest in ChairSide Imaging? Firstly, consider the benefits of digital radiography stated above. The extent to which you enjoy some of those benefits is determined by the software. Enhanced patient communication, which is a significant benefit, is highly dependent on the software.

The efficiency with which xrays are taken can make a big difference in the time spent. Consider that some software requires the user to interact withthe computer prior to each xray to set the tooth numbers. Some systems require the xray to be manually rotated and placed into the mount. Consider that CSI does this automatically. In a single full mouth series you could save minutes.

For some companies, software is a vehicle for locking you into their technology. Imaging software offered by the big supply houses only works with xray systems they provide! ChairSide Imaging works with the widest array of digital xray equipment and cameras.

Most importantly is integration. At an absolute bare minimum, you should have a single imaging software for all your imaging devices. XRays in one software and photos in another software is inefficient. True integration goes beyond and brings together your charting, practice management and imaging under one unified, seamless solution. We call this 'Visual Charting'.

The key to point to take from this article is to look at your imaging solution as part of a digital suite. A software package that acquires and stores digital xrays was the standard 15 years ago. Today, a stand-alone 'bridged' imaging software with no built-in charting and practice management solution is not going provide you the benefits of efficiency that Visual Charting provides.

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