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Radiographics. 2013 Mar-Apr;33(2):E61-70. doi: 10.1148/rg.332125101. Epub 2012 Dec 21.

Informatics in Radiology: developing a touchless user interface for intraoperative image control during interventional radiology procedures.

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Department of Radiology, University of California San Diego Medical Center, 200 W Arbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92103-8756, USA.


Review of prior and real-time patient images is critical during an interventional radiology procedure; however, it often poses the challenge of efficiently reviewing images while maintaining a sterile field. Although interventional radiologists can "scrub out" of the procedure, use sterile console covers, or verbally relay directions to an assistant, the ability of the interventionalist to directly control the images without having to touch the console could offer potential gains in terms of sterility, procedure efficiency, and radiation reduction. The authors investigated a potential solution with a low-cost, touch-free motion-tracking device that was originally designed as a video game controller. The device tracks a person's skeletal frame and its motions, a capacity that was adapted to allow manipulation of medical images by means of hand gestures. A custom software program called the Touchless Radiology Imaging Control System translates motion information obtained with the motion-tracking device into commands to review images on a workstation. To evaluate this system, 29 radiologists at the authors' institution were asked to perform a set of standardized tasks during a routine abdominal computed tomographic study. Participants evaluated the device for its efficacy as well as its possible advantages and disadvantages. The majority (69%) of those surveyed believed that the device could be useful in an interventional radiology practice and did not foresee problems with maintaining a sterile field. This proof-of-concept prototype and study demonstrate the potential utility of the motion-tracking device for enhancing imaging-guided treatment in the interventional radiology suite while maintaining a sterile field. Supplemental material available at

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