Image Resolution & DICOM Guidelines

The following recommendations formulated by the ACVR Digital Imaging Standards Committee (DISC) have been adopted by the ACVR as guidelines for the veterinary profession:

1. The ACVR considers 2.5 lp/mm as the mininum standard for spatial resolution in a clinical setting for primary capture digital radiographic devices. This recommendation also applies to secondary capture of radiographic images such as digital cameras, laser scanners, etc.

2. The ACVR recommends defining a DICOM study as follows:


  • Localizer images (scout/topograms) should constitute a single series and should not be part of an axial dataset.
  • A group of axial images acquired in a contiguous fashion should constitute a series.
  • Reconstructed datasets should comprise a separate series.


  • Still images should all be in the same series. Each cineloop should comprise one series.


  • A study should comprise a group of images of the same region taken at radiographic examination (e.g., a 3-view thoracic examination constitutes a DICOM study).
  • Each image taken in the radiographic examination should constitute a separate series.
  • Images modified in post processing should be in the same series as the original image.

Adding images to a closed study (i.e., a study already sent to the archive or telemedicine service for review) is discouraged. While the addition of images to a prior study is often convenient for the clinician, this can potentially result in submission of images to a consultant after a report has been generated on that study. The additional images may contain radiographic findings that may compromise the accuracy of the report. Therefore adding images to a closed study is discouraged.