Current Status and Future Perspectives

During the last decade pathology has promoted from the quick progress of image digitizing technology. The development in this technology had led to the formation of slide scanners which are incapable to produce whole slide images (WSI) which can be discovered by image viewers in a way comparable to the conventional microscope. The file size of the WSI varies from a few megabytes to several gigabytes, leading to contests in the area of image storage and management when they will be used regularly in daily clinical practice. Digital slides are used in pathology for education, diagnostic purpose (clinicopathological meetings, consultations, revisions, slide panels and, increasingly, for direct clinical diagnostics) and archiving. As an alternative to conservative slides, WSI are usually well accepted, especially in education, where they are obtainable to a large number of students with the full possibilities of annotations without the problem of difference between serial sections. Image processing techniques can also be functional to WSI, providing pathologists with tools assisting in the diagnosis-making procedure.

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