DICOM Explorer

Structure and display of Patients/Studies/Series

DICOM Explorer

The DICOM Explorer is the panel on the left that displays the Patient/Study/Series representation defined in the DICOM standard.

The data displayed in the DICOM Explorer can be imported form different ways.

DICOM EXplorer DICOM EXplorer


You can navigate through the Patient/Study/Series/Image structure using only keyboard shortcuts. For example:

  • Open an image and, if necessary, select the view to focus on. If the layout has more than one view, you can move across the views with Tab and Shift + Tab. The view surrounded by an orange line is the focused view.
  • Navigate through images within a series with Up and Down
  • Navigate through series within a study with Left and Right
  • Navigate through studies within a patient with Ctrl + Left and Ctrl + Right
  • Navigate through patients with Ctrl + Up and Ctrl + Down (follow the order in the patient’s combo box and select the last tab if a patient has several tabs already open). To navigate open tabs, use Ctrl + Tab and Ctrl + Shift + Tab.

Patient Level

  • Weasis allows multi-patient display. By default, when images are imported a tab with the patient’s name opens in the main area.
  • A tab containing a multi-view layout can only display images from a single patient.
  • Changing patients can be done either through the first combobox in the DICOM Explorer (see image above) or by selecting a tab in the main area.
  • In the combobox the patients are sorted in alphabetical order regardless of case and according to the regional setting.
  • Studies and Series are displayed within the same patient when the metadata Patient Name and Patient ID are the same. Otherwise, new patients are displayed.

Study Level

  • A study contains one or more series (thumbnails) belonging to a patient. A line representing the study surrounds its series (see image above).
  • By default, the studies are sorted by reverse chronology order (since Version4.1.0Study data sorting” can be changed in the menu “File > Preferences > DICOM > DICOM Explorer”). If there is no study date then the studies are sorted alphabetically according to the Study Description.
  • By default, all the studies are displayed, however you can choose to display only one of them from the study combobox.

Series Level

Thumbnails Thumbnails

  • A series is represented by a thumbnail that contains a certain number of images (number displayed at the bottom left).
  • According to predefined rules, some series are separated into sub-series also represented by a thumbnail with a number preceded by ‘#’ in the upper right corner. Series splitting is necessary for the consistency of some tools such as the MPR, cross-lines and synchronization of series. However, sometimes separation is not desired, and sub-series can be re-merged using the context menu.
  • The sorting of the series is done by the serial number and if this last one is not present then in a chronological way by the date of the series or other dates.
  • To open new series:
    • Drag and drop a thumbnail in the main area (if the series is dropped in a view of the same patient then the series is replaced otherwise a new tab is created).
    • Double click or navigate with the up/down arrow key and press return on a selected thumbnail (if a view of the same patient exists then the series in the view surrounded by an orange line is replaced)
    • Select one or more thumbnails and choose an action from the “2D DICOM Viewer” context menu:
      • Open: Opens the series in the most appropriate layout (replaces the series if the patient’s tab already exists)
      • Open in new tab: Opens the series in the most appropriate layout in a new tab.
      • Open in screen: Opens the series in the most appropriate layout in a specific screen.
      • Add: Adds the series to the current patient’s layout if exists.


From the main menu “File > Preferences > DICOM > DICOM Explorer”:

  • Thumbnail size: defines the width of the thumbnails and adjusts the panel accordingly (Default: 144). It is recommended to restart the application after this change.
  • Study data sorting: allows sorting the studies by chronological order or inversely chronological (Default: reverse chronology order). Since Version4.1.0.
  • Open in new tab: behavior to automatically open the images of a patient when using WADO or WADO-RS (Default: All the patients)
  • Download all series immediately: allows starting the download of the series immediately when using WADO or WADO-RS (Default: true). If unchecked then you must click on the play button on each series or globally at the bottom of the thumbnail list.