2.8 | 34 Votes
What is a DICOM file?
A DICOM file is an image saved in the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) format. It contains an image from a medical scan, such as an ultrasound or MRI. DICOM files may also include identification data for patients to link the image to a specific individual.
The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) developed the DICOM format. They designed the format to exchange and view medical images, such as CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasound images.
NEMA released the initial DICOM standard in 1983 and has released various revisions throughout the 1990s and 2000s. The association still actively maintains the format.
NOTE: DICOM images more commonly use the .DCM extension.
How to open a DICOM file
You can open DICOM files with various applications, such as MicroDicom viewer (Windows), ezDICOM (Windows), OsiriX (macOS), and MeVisLab (multiplatform). You can also upload DCM files to View My Scans and Jack Imaging in a web browser and view the images.
How to convert a DICOM file
Several applications, including XnViewMP and ezDICOM, can convert DICOM files to other image formats.
For example, XnViewMP can convert DICOM files to many formats, including the following file types:
- .JPG, .JPEG - JPEG Image
- .JP2 - JPEG 2000 Core Image
- .PNG - Portable Network Graphic
- .BMP - Bitmap Image
- .GIF - Graphical Interchange Format
- .TGA, .TARGA - Targa Graphic
- .TIF, .TIFF - Tagged Image File Format
- .WEBP - WebP Image
- .DDS - Direct Draw Surface Image
- .EMF - Enhanced Windows Metafile
- .PS - PostScript File
- .HEIC - High Efficiency Image Format
- .PDF - Portable Document Format
- .PSD - Adobe Photoshop Document