Computed radiography (CR) uses very similar equipment to conventional radiography except that in place of a film to create the image, an imaging plate (IP) made of photostimulable phosphor is used. The imaging plate is housed in a special cassette and placed under the body part or object to be examined and the x-ray exposure is made. Hence, instead of taking an exposed film into a darkroom for developing in chemical tanks or an automatic film processor, the imaging plate is run through a special laser scanner, or CR reader, that reads and digitizes the image. The digital image can then be viewed and enhanced using software that has functions very similar to other conventional digital image-processing software, such as contrast, brightness, filtration and zoom.
Digital radiography is a form of x-ray imaging, where digital X-ray sensors are used instead of traditional photographic film. Advantages include time efficiency through bypassing chemical processing and the ability to digitally transfer and enhance images. Also less radiation can be used to produce an image of similar contrast to conventional radiography.
Computed radiography (CR) is often distinguished from Direct Radiography (DR). CR and DR have many similarities. Both CR and DR use a medium to capture x-ray energy and both produce a digital image that can be enhanced for soft copy diagnosis or further review. Both CR and DR can also present an image within seconds of exposure. CR generally involves the use of a cassette that houses the imaging plate, similar to traditional film-screen systems, to record the image whereas DR typically captures the image directly onto a flat panel detector without the use of a cassette.