[slicer-users] Slicer Scene file clinical usage

Andras Lasso lasso at cs.queensu.ca
Sat Nov 20 10:32:08 EST 2010


Hello David,

We use 3D Slicer for MRI-guided prostate biopsy procedures. Based on our
experiences the followings are needed:

1. Custom module that implements user interface for all the workflow steps:
Slicer is very generic and flexible, but during a procedure you don't have
time and you don't need that much flexibility (although flexibility is very
valuable sometimes, for troubleshooting and managing unexpected situations).
A custom module can provide optimized user interface and automation of
complex tasks (see ProstateNav). 

2. An engineer to operate Slicer: Even with a custom module the Slicer-based
software is still a research software, which is more complex and flexible
than a usual commercial software (and some tasks are certainly out of the
comfort zone of the clinicians, such as setting up image transfer between
the scanner and Slicer).

3. Custom release of Slicer: You need to perform your own verification and
validation of Slicer for the specific clinical use. It means performing
extensive testing whenever anything is changed in the software. To minimize
the testing effort, you want to change software only when it is necessary.
Therefore, you probably want to decouple official Slicer release schedule
from your own clinical software release schedule (and build custom Slicer
releases from a selected stable Slicer core version + the latest version of
your module).

You might be also interested in this short presentation on using Slicer for
IGT research:
http://www.na-mic.org/Wiki/images/7/7a/SlicerIgtAppsCars2010.pdf.

Andras


________________________________
Andras Lasso
Senior Medical Image Computing & Applications Engineer
Laboratory for Percutanous Surgery
School of Computing
Queen's University
Kingston, ON, CANADA
Email: lasso at cs.queensu.ca
Web: http://perk.cs.queensu.ca


-----Original Message-----
From: slicer-users-bounces at bwh.harvard.edu
[mailto:slicer-users-bounces at bwh.harvard.edu] On Behalf Of Ron Kikinis
Sent: 2010-November-20 8:21 AM
To: slicer-users at bwh.harvard.edu
Subject: Re: [slicer-users] Slicer Scene file clinical usage

David,

first the disclaimer: Slicer is a research tool and not intended for 
clinical use. If you use it for clinical research, its your 
responsibility to obtain proper approvals (e.g. IRB).

Having said that, I am not quite sure what you mean with "streamline 
clinical flow".
-If you are looking at a way to repeat a certain sequence of 
configurations to present a case, that is something that can be achieved 
using the scenensnapshots (in the lower left corner of the main window.
If you are looking at creating a particular workflow, that is something 
that Slicer supports with "wizards". Changetracker and the prostate 
biopsy are two examples of such wizards, but they require programming 
(not for end users to implement).
If you are looking for hanging protocols, they are not currently 
available in Slicer.

Ron

On 11/19/10 7:54 PM, David Fuentes wrote:
> Hello,
>
> Is there a reference that provides information on the Slicer
> software design philosophy for use in a clinical setting?
>
> With the numerous combinations of modules that can be used to create a
scene
> consisting of multiple pre-operative/inter-operative data sets, robot
> integration, segmented surface model visualization, etc,  are slicer scene
> files (.mrml) designed to be used to streamline the clinical work flow in
> setting up the modules in a platform portable manner?
>
> -or-
>
> Is it relied upon the expertise of the user to interact with the
> needed modules to create the desired scene?
>
>
> Thanks,
> David Fuentes
>
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-- 
Ron Kikinis, M.D.,
Robert Greenes Distinguished Director of Biomedical Informatics
Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School
Director, Surgical Planning Laboratory
http://www.spl.harvard.edu/~kikinis
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