Understanding the Importance of High DQE Ratings: A Case for DR Systems

Understanding the Importance of High DQE Ratings: A Case for DR Systems

High image resolution and image clarity are two notable features of Digital Radiography (DR) systems, which make them superior to conventional and Computer Radiography (CR) systems.

DR equipment absorbs a higher number of X-rays, which is why they have high DQE ratings and produce far better images than CR and conventional radiography equipment.

As someone looking to upgrade to digital radiography equipment, it’s essential to understand how DQE works and how DR is superior to CR and conventional X-ray. This blog will discuss what DQE is, compare DQE ratings for DR with other medical imaging equipment, and speak about whether retrofit solutions offer DQE as high as brand new equipment.

Detective Quantum Efficiency (DQE)

Detective Quantum Efficiency measures how many X-rays a detector captures and converts into high-quality images. An X-ray detector with higher DQEs requires lower doses of radiation to produce better images. DQE is a fundamental variable that all imaging specialists and healthcare facilities should consider when buying new imaging equipment as it’s a significant factor in assessing the quality of imaging equipment.

The DQE is measured based on Signal to Noise Ratio. Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) measures the contrast produced while you’re X-raying someone—the higher the SNR, the clearer the image. DR equipment has higher SNRs and, therefore, also has higher DQE ratings.

DQE Ratings for DR Equipment

DQE RatingsDigital radiography equipment has higher DQE ratings compared to other imaging equipment. Where CR equipment has a DQE rating of 40%, DR equipment has DQE as high as 65%.—DR equipment needs half the amount of X-rays to produce images as good as CR.  As such, patients are not exposed to high radiation levels to capture clear images either.

These statistics bode well for imaging facilities because DR makes ALARA compliance much easier and produces better images. When supported by suitable software, DR flat panel detectors also allow for rapid data transmission.

Differences between Retrofit and New DR Equipment

The good thing about DR equipment is that you don’t need to invest in brand new digital X-ray units (generator, collimator). DR flat panel detectors are easily incorporated into your existing imaging equipment, even if the old equipment supported CR or conventional radiography before. There is no difference in image quality or the speed of image acquisition between retrofit and new DR units. You’ll also have to invest in image acquisition software and some computers, but compared to the cost of a new unit, it’s a meager price to pay.

ExamVue is a supplier of cost-effective digital radiography solutions for medical and veterinary practices. The company offers DR flat panel detector, X-ray image acquisition software, and a patented PACS to support their Digital Radiography Systems. Get in touch with the company today for more information on their services.

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