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Digital Pathology

Many pathology laboratories are looking to modernise and update their work methods using the latest technology solutions for improved workflow, collaboration, and ultimately faster turn-around times on opinions and diagnosis.

Digital Pathology solutions from Perfekt combine leading technologies from clinical, pathology and IT providers to provide fast online access to tissue samples for pathologists, researchers and educators anywhere in the globe.  These solutions offer an array of benefits.

Pathology Slides

Collaboration: online whole slide imaging means that referrals and second opinions can be sought and achieved in seconds or minutes rather than days or weeks.  Travel of pathologists or the samples themselves is virtually eliminated.

Faster diagnosis: Computer aided diagnostics, using advanced mathematical methods, can analyse a number of images rapidly looking for anomalies that will later require human attention.

Storage: Large pathology labs in hospitals store tonnes of glass slides each year. Because of access requirements these would need to be on hand for reference. Perfekt's digital pathology solutions allow for these to be stored in low-cost offsite facilities (if at all) whilst pathologists access the online repositories for diagnosis.

An enabler for Hystology and Hystopathology - E-learning is transforming training around the globe.  Perfekt's Digital Pathology solutions allow for educators to conference up to 50 students at a time, located anywhere on the globe, whilst examining tissue samples in the highest resolution for teaching accurate diagnosis.

Digital Slide Scanner

Perfekt's Digital Pathology solutions begin with the digital slide scanner from manufacturers including: Aperio, Olympus, 3D Histech, Hamamatsu, Leica, Roche, GE/Omnyx, Leica, Philips, Huron and others.  Slide scanning is semi-automated and takes between 30 seconds and six minutes per slide.  Images are therefore available in surgery for real-time review.

 

The User Layer

While scanners are provided with basic inbuilt viewing software, the Collibio software is an advanced and innovative web application for managing digital pathology images and associated data. It is designed to allow pathologists to immediately collaborate using images from proprietary scanner systems, and breaks down barriers for adoption of digital pathology.

Collibio

Collibio allows users to connect instantly to existing digital image repositories and link to authorised images on the server. The repositories can be supplied by different scanner vendors and can be in different locations. Images are automatically linked into the system as they are scanned.

Within Collibio access to the images can be shared with other users, and collaboration can occur between pathologists, researchers and students. This can be controlled by administrators through flexible role-based user access. The integrated image viewer allows rapid review of images residing on different image repositories. Images can be annotated with intuitive tools. A conference between users can be initiated effortlessly allowing synchronized viewing of images by all participants. The participants can indicate features of interest using the mouse pointer, and control of image navigation can be passed between users.

Collibio can also be configured to allow fast and secure publishing of images and associated metadata from one Collibio system to another. This can facilitate easy collaboration between different sites.

The Storage Layer Hitachi Content Platform (HCP)

Pathology is the most information intense area in medicine. Server side computer graphics and intelligent information repositories will bring the pathology into the digital era of medicine. Information intense areas require an innovative approach due to the large amount of information, a large amount of information should be handled with some care. The large volume introduces a problem with scale, both economical and operational.

Perfekt's Digital Pathology solution is deployed with a special storage platform from Hitachi Data Systems called the Hitachi Content Platform (or HCP).  The HCP is much more than a standard file server - it is a content repository.

The repository is designed to act as an information repository, the images, referrals, reports and meta-data are stored in normalised vendor neutral wide spread formats, such as XML and pyramidal TIFF. This means that the information itself is not coupled to any specific application or database, everything put in HCP is pure information. Clean and organised information makes it easy to comply with legal and regulatory demands, such as HIPAA, CE, FDA and local regional regulations. There is support for both technical and clinical information lifecycle management (ILM) within HCP.

The HCP is a highly-scalable storage platform with options to 40PB.  Importantly its architecture is self-protecting such that it will never need backing up.

 

Other benefits of Perfekt's Digital Pathology Offering

  • Clinical metadata stored with the object instead of in an external database. This offers a more robust exit strategy. No database is required for user content.
  • Doctor referral and reports are stored with the slide. 
  • Interfaces for complete integration with the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS).

Other Solution Components that Perfekt can Provide

  • Servers and related IT infratructure on which to run the applications
  • Pathology Monitors for viewing images
  • Integrated computer assisted diagnosis: Definiens and Visiopharm, scans through multiple images and stored in custom metadata. Automated work lists, prioritised by diagnosis.
  • Complete solution project planning and implementation
  • Digital workflow design
  • Application development for interfacing with the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS)

Read about the ConnectingSpaces Digital Pathology solution using the solutions from Pixcelldata and Hitachi Data Systems.  Click Here.

Perfekt's role in the ConnectingSpaces solution:

Perfekt played an instrumental role in running a proof of concept of the environment over a five month period in our Melbourne data centre, allowing ConnectingSpaces personnel to test the Collibio software on our Hitachi Content Platform system.  The decision to proceed with the implementation was based on a sound result for ConnectingSpaces.

 

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