In e-mails from veterinarians asking questions about different types of digital radiography systems, I will be asked….:”I am looking at CR systems, CCD systems and DR systems” or “I am deciding between CCD and true DR.”
Main Point 1: CCD is DR
There are three broad classes of digital radiography systems:
CR – computed radiography – imaging plates and a plate reader are used to generate an image
DR – direct digital radiography – imaging plates are not used and the images are available immediately without a processing step
There are two subclasses of DR machines
Flat Panel Detectors: wafers of silicon are “retrofitted” onto existing x-ray machines. Usually these plates are placed in the bucky tray
CCD cameras: CCD cameras are placed inside the x-ray machine which record the images. Most CCD cameras are sold with a new x-ray machine although some can be retrofitted to existing x-ray equipment
Diagramatically, the digital radiography family tree looks like this:
As you can see CCD based digital radiography systems and flat panel detectors are just two different ways to obtain a digital radiographic image and both are classified as DR systems.
Main Point 2 – TRUE DR is a proprietary eponym
Many veterinarians refer to DR Flat Panel Detectors as TRUE DR. This would suggest that there is something called FALSE DR or that CCD detectors are not DR machines (see above).
There is no such thing as TRUE DR. All DR machines generate a digital image without using a cassette based processing step. As stated previously CCD machines and flat panel detectors are both DR systems.
TRUE DR, however, seems to be quickly becoming a proprietary eponym in the veterinary community. An eponym is a general term used to describe from what or whom something derived its name. Therefore, a proprietary eponym could be considered a brand name (trademark or service mark) which has fallen into general use. Frisbee, Jell-O, White Out, Kleenex, and Band Aids are common proprietary eponyms. http://www.prairienet.org/~rkrause/brands.html
The confusion comes from the brand name of the Sound Technologies digital radiography system called Tru DRTM. Tru DRTM is the trademarked brand name of the digital radiography suite from Sound Technologies.
When using the terms to TRUTM or TRUE DR those terms should be used to refer specifically to products from Sound Technologies. Sound Tech should be commended on their excellent marketing and branding but CCD detectors or Flat Panel Detectors from other vendors are no less TRUE or MORE FALSE than the products from Sound Technologies.