Merge Healthcare Unveils Version 7.0 of the Merge Mammo(TM) Diagnostic Mammography Solution



    
    Newest features in multi-modality, vendor-neutral workstation enhance
    efficiency, improve clinical reading capabilities and ease transition to
    digital mammography
    

    MILWAUKEE, March 6 /CNW/ -- Merge Healthcare, (Nasdaq:   MRGE) (TSX: MRG),
a leading medical imaging software and services provider, today announced the
release of Merge Mammo(TM) version 7.0.  As one of the industry's first
multi-modality, vendor-neutral digital mammography workstation applications,
this system enables organizations to display and read images from different
systems simultaneously (digital mammography, ultrasound, MR, CR, etc.), and to
read all breast studies on a single workstation, regardless of which vendor's
acquisition device is used to secure the images.
    (Logo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20030430/MRGELOGO )

    Version 7.0 offers several new features including:

    Enhanced full-resolution viewing -- In full resolution, a digital breast
image is larger than a computer screen.  Thus, radiologists must pan across
the image to view the image in its entirety.  The process takes time and
increases risk of the radiologist missing a portion of the read.  Merge
Mammo's new functionality provides a fluid, step-through method enabling the
radiologist to move from section to section in full resolution to ensure
complete review of the entire image.

    Optimized screen "real estate" -- Traditionally with mammography, a
radiologist sees more than the breast.  Blackened, background areas (often
scans of the imaging unit itself) consume a portion of the viewing area.
Viewing can be optimized by reducing background and isolating the breast.
Merge Mammo now incorporates new algorithm-driven isolation of the breast
image.  By automatically fitting the breast image into the display,
radiologists immediately see the image at maximum size, and avoid the time and
distraction of moving and manipulating images.

    Enhanced inverted imaging -- Some radiologists use an inversion technique
when reading images, converting black to white and white to black.  Merge
Mammo 7.0 offers a new feature that enables conversion of white (the breast
image) to black, while maintaining background (non breast image) as black.
This enhances the radiologist's ability to isolate potential problem areas
more effectively when inverting images.

    Additionally, Merge Mammo 7.0 gains functionality from the new On Demand
interface with the Fusion Matrix PACS Archive.  This option allows for
enhanced workflow capabilities including retrieval of prior studies and a
centralized reading worklist.
    "We have benefited from a close relationship with the Merge Healthcare
development team over the last three years," says Ramin Abrahim, MD, a
radiologist with Washington Radiology Associates (WRA) which has six
outpatient imaging facilities in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC.  "The
result has been a feature-rich, efficient, almost self-maintaining product
that has made our clinical work much easier. Once we converted to digital
mammography, our experience-based input and corporate collaboration has
continued to make Merge Mammo a top-notch, vendor-neutral, standalone
solution."
    Merge Mammo is designed to streamline breast imaging workflow and enhance
clinical reading capabilities.  It offers easily customized workflow tools to
support radiologist-specific viewing preferences.  Facilities are using Merge
Mammo to create environments that equal or exceed hard copy (film) review
speed.
    "Recently published DMIST results have inspired many organizations to
adopt digital mammography, and mammography was one of the hottest topics at
this year's RSNA", says Kenneth Rardin, CEO of Merge Healthcare. "Yet
organizations face obstacles in moving to digital, including high costs of
acquisition devices, difficulty in blending mammography systems during merger
or acquisition, inefficiencies of using multiple workstations, and challenges
in optimizing collaboration across multiple facilities.  We created Merge
Mammo to ensure relevance to the true needs of imaging professionals, and will
continue working with customers to create new features that improve clinical
outcomes, optimize productivity and allow organizations to grow with this
solution."
    Merge Healthcare recently announced that increasing numbers of
organizations are adopting its Merge Mammo solution.

    Merge Healthcare is a market leader in the development and delivery of
medical imaging and information management software and services. Our
innovative software solutions use leading-edge imaging software technologies
that accelerate market delivery for our OEM customers, while our end-user
solutions improve our customers' productivity and enhance the quality of
patient care they provide. For additional information, visit our website at
www.mergehealthcare.com.





For further information:

For further information: Beth Frost-Johnson, Senior Vice President, 
Marketing of Merge Healthcare, +1-414-977-4000, marketing@merge.com Web Site:
http://www.mergehealthcare.com

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