DICOM specifies a standard for storing images and other composite objects on media such as a CD (Compact Disc) or DVD (Digital Versatile Disc or Digital Video Disc) for the purpose of exchange. Application Profiles are used to specify this for particular applications such as CT/MR, US, cardiology and general purpose use. Note: The “disc” spelling is used rather than “disk” because the standards that define the physical media and recording methods for CD, DVD, and their variants use the “disc” spelling.

The DICOM standard is primarily a communication standard. Since communicating images on recorded media is important for practice (this process can be referred to as “intermittently connected message communication”), DICOM defines Application Profiles for the purpose of exchanging DICOM images on recordable media. For the purposes of recording DICOM images (Information Objects) on exchange media, the DICOM Standard includes the Application Profiles that define how this is done. Unlike communication over a network, the exchange of messages using stored media requires that what would be a DICOM Message on a network be a DICOM File for recordable media. Media recording also requires a directory structure. DICOM provides this by defining a DICOM Basic Directory Information Object Definition (IOD).

As with a DICOM communication exchange, where each device can either play the role of a SCU or SCP, or both, for media support a device can claim different roles: File Set Reader (FSR), when it can read the exchange media, FSC, when being able to create or write the media, or FSU, when it can update the directory.

The variety of media supported by DICOM is described in detail in DICOM PS3-YYYY (where YYYY represents the most current year’s version) Parts 10, 11, and 12. The most current versions of these are available here: https://www.dicomstandard.org/current


  • Standards


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SOP Class

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