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This wiki is dedicated to free/libre and open source medical software. You can help by editing this page. You can also help to find a new name by visiting the discussion page.

MedGPL Manifesto (draft)

We believe technology must be used to improve the Human condition.

To make the best possible medical decisions,

  1. health professionnals should have access to the best algorithms and the latest software,
  2. the cost of a software license should not be a question,
  3. transparency of a software or algorithm is essential.

Alternative manifesto of this project: see TraInSH manifesto.

The basics

Content of the wiki

Software needs of the medical community

It is necessary to establish the software needs of the medical community and try to find solutions to those needs.

Multi-modality Imaging Workstation

  • Image database
  • DICOM network services (store, query/retreive, print, etc.)
  • Sophisticated and customisable image viewer
  • Image processing algorithms
  • Analysis and quantification algorithms
  • Workstation auto-validation system (after updates)
    • runs a algorithms on supplied images
    • compares results with a website
    • computes your workstation bencmarks.
  • Extensive contextual help
    • that cites related scientific articles
    • gives a time estimate (based on history or benchmarking)
    • that suggest alternatives

PACS Server

PACS stands for Picture Archiving and Communication System.

  • DICOM query
  • DICOM database
  • Archiving system
  • Backup system

Medico-administrative Information Systems

Telemedecine (software part)

  • Remote ECG monitoring
  • Remote glycemia monitoring
  • Remote vital sign (temperature, pressure, pulse, SpO2 ...) monitoring

List of free/libre and open source medical software

Our interest here should be all Open Soure and Free software that are compatible whith the GPL licence. If one day, we have all we need to make a Medical Linux Distribution, it should be released under the GPL licence.



DCMTK stands for DICOM Toolkit. It is an open source library that implements a large part of the DICOM standard. Developped by OFFIS in ANSI C and C++, it compiles on MS Windows, UNIX (including Linux, Solaris, QNX, IRIX, Free/Net/OpenBSD and MacOS X). It requires the following external libraries: zlib, libtiff, libpng, libxml2 and libiconv. Home page


DICOMscope is a free DICOM viewer implemented in Java 1.3 by OFFIS. It can display monochrome DICOM images. It is based on DCMTK. homepage.

OFFIS also offer other interesting open source packages that remain to be documented here.


XMedCon is a GPL medical image conversion utility and library. Supported formats (read and write): ACR/NEMA 2.0, Analyze (SPM), Concorde µPET, DICOM 3.0, CTI ECAT 6/7, GIF87a/89a, InterFile 3.3, INW (RUG), PNG. Runs on Unix systems, reqires Glib, Gtk+.and GdkPixbuf. Homepage.


AMIDE: Amide's a Medical Imaging Data Examiner. A free tool for viewing, analyzing, and registering volumetric medical imaging data sets. It is programed using GTK+. It runs on Windows Linux and MacOS X. Homepage.


VolPack is a portable software library for volume rendering.Homepage Is is released under the Stanford Computer Graphics Laboratory General Software License which seams to be compatible whith the Open Source definition.

It seems to have been inactive for a while. The developpers of AMIDE have an ubdated version that compiles on Linux and MacOS X. AMIDE version of VolPack


OsiriX is an image processing software dedicated to DICOM images produced by medical equipment and confocal microscopy. It is fully compliant with the DICOM standard for image comunication and image file formats. OsiriX is able to receive images transferred by DICOM communication protocol from any PACS or medical imaging modality.

OsiriX has been specifically designed for navigation and visualization of multimodality and multidimensional images: 2D Viewer, 3D Viewer, 4D Viewer (3D series with temporal dimension) and 5D Viewer (3D series with temporal and functional dimensions). The 3D Viewer offers all modern rendering modes: Multiplanar reconstruction (MPR), Surface Rendering, Volume Rendering and Maximum Intensity Projection (MIP). All these modes support 4D data and are able to produce image fusion between two different series.

Osirix is at the same time a DICOM PACS workstation for medical imaging and an image processing software for medical research (radiology and nuclear imaging), functional imaging, 3D imaging, confocal microscopy and molecular imaging.

You can install OsiriX as a stand-alone DICOM viewer on a DICOM CD-Rom.

OsiriX is distributed under the GNU General Public License. Homepage Source Code

aycan offers a FDA and CE certified professional version for legal use in patient treatment.


ezDIXOM is a software is designed to display most medical images. It has a viewer and some developpent tools for programmers including ActiveX (windows) and CLX (windows and linux) components. Last update is 2 years old. It is released under some sort of custom Open Source Licence. The Homepage and Code.


Julius is a dicom viewer capable of viewing 3D images. It as 2D slice views and 3D volume and surface visualization. It is written in c++ and uses Qt, it works on Windows and Linux. It is released under the Julius non commercial license.


Dicom3tools is a package of open source utilities to read and modify DICOM files. It has no network support. It can convert some proprietary image formats to DICOM. It is released under a custum license: "Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice". Homepage.

The DICOM Standard

It is a website dedicated to explaining the DICOM standard. It has lots of links to free DICOM software. It also have links to DICOM image archives. Website.

ITK Segmentation & Registration Toolkit

ITK is an open source software toolkit for performing registration and segmentation. It employs leading-edge algorithms in two, three, and more dimensions. ITK is implemented in C++ and is cross-platform. Website.

ClearCanvas Workstation

ClearCanvas Workstation is a friendly, easy to use DICOM PACS viewer. Beside the open source version, it has FDA-approved versions with additional features. These are available commercially.


openDICOM.NET is a set of librairies to manipulate DICOM images on the .NET plaftorm (through Mono).


dcm4che is a collection of open source applications and utilities for the healthcare enterprise. These applications have been developed in the Java programming language for performance and portability, supporting deployment on JDK 1.4 and up.

At the core of the dcm4che project is a robust implementation of the DICOM standard. The dcm4che-1.x DICOM toolkit is used in many production applications across the world, while the current (2.x) version of the toolkit has been re-architected for high performance and flexibility.



Mediboard is a Healthcare Information System open source based on web technologies. Mediboard Homepage


A web-based "electronic healt/medical records" software written in PHP. It is released under GPL. Homepage. It's based on FreeB


FreeB was the first GPL Medical Billing Engine. It is written in PHP. Homepage

Mirth Project

Mirth Project is the "Swiss army knife" HL7 integration engine. Specifically designed for HL7 message integration, Mirth provides the necessary tools for developing, deploying, and monitoring interfaces.

Signal processing


BioSig is a software library for analysing biomedical signals such as EEG, ECoG, ECG, EMG... It is available for Octave/Matlab and C/C++. It is released under GPL.

The project also produced a biosignal viewer caled SigViewer. Home page of the BioSig Project


PhysioToolkit is a library of software for physiologic signal processing and analysis, detection of physiologically significant events using both classical techniques and novel methods based on statistical physics and nonlinear dynamics, interactive display and characterization of signals, creation of new databases, simulation of physiologic and other signals, quantitative evaluation and comparison of analysis methods, and analysis of nonequilibrium and nonstationary processes. All PhysioToolkit software is available in source form under the GNU General Public License (GPL). Homepage

Priorities to GPL medical software developement

Priorities could be established based on needs, feasability, interests, and other citerion.

Strategies to getting GPL software to health specialists

Legal issues of GPL medical software

  1. How to avoid using concepts that are copyrighted?
  2. What about certification, liability issues?
  3. Is any type of legal warranties possible in a GPL medical software?
  4. Can the GNU GPL cover such things as Medical innovations in software?
  5. Is it possible to make a public medical image database?

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