Standards for creating and integrating information about patients, equipment, and procedures are vitally needed when planning for an efficient Operating Room (OR). The DICOM Working Group 24 (WG24) has been established to develop DICOM objects and services related to Image Guided Surgery (IGS). To determine these standards, it is important to define day-to-day, step-by-step surgical workflow practices and create surgery workflow models per procedures or per variable cases.
A well-defined workflow and a high fidelity patient model will be the base of activities for both, radiation therapy and surgery. Considering the present and future requirements for surgical planning and intervention, such a patient model must be n-dimensional, were n may include the spatial and temporal dimensions as well as a number of functional variables.
As the boundaries between radiation therapy, surgery and interventional radiology are becoming less well-defined, precise patient models will become the greatest common denominator for all therapeutic disciplines. In addition to imaging, the focus of WG24 should, therefore, also be to serve the therapeutic disciplines by enabling modelling technology to be based on standards.