Background Purpose: Image transmission is an integral part of telemedicine, allowing evaluation of patients at remote sites. We developed a simple method of wireless transmission of digital images to a hand-held computer (PDA) and evaluated its feasibility and diagnostic accuracy in patients with acute renal colic or renal trauma. Materials and Methods: The CT images from 11 patients with suspected renal colic and one patient with renal trauma were transmitted using a cellular telephone with a wireless modem link to a PDA (Sony Clie 615C). A diagnostic interpretation was recorded for the presence/absence of an upper-tract stone, stone location, estimated stone size, and signs of upper-tract obstruction. Radiologic staging of trauma was provided in the patient with a renal injury. Comparison was made with the final dictated report of a staff radiologist. Results: Ten CT sets of patients with renal colic were used for comparison, the remaining one being excluded because of ambiguity in the final radiology report. An average of 5.9 ± 1.6 images, average size 32.2 ± 5.2 kb (range 21-42 kb) for each patient were sent at an average speed of 1 kb/sec. Interpretation correctly identified stone presence in 80%, hydronephrosis in 100%, and perinephric stranding in 80% and stone size within 1 ± 1 mm. A stage-3 renal trauma was correctly identified and staged. Conclusion: Wireless teleradiology to PDA units provides image quality sufficient for diagnostic interpretation. Anticipated improvements in wireless transmission and PDA screen image resolution will enhance the speed, quality, and quantity of images transmitted. Wireless teleradiology may facilitate convenient rapid evaluation of patients at remote sites.
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