DICOM PS3.7 2024b - Message Exchange

7.4 Association Services

The DICOM Message Service Element does not provide separate services for the establishment and termination of application Associations. This section provides an overview of how an Application Entity using the DIMSE service uses the Association Services defined in PS3.8.

During the Association establishment phase, a DIMSE Service User shall exchange initialization information using parameters of the A-ASSOCIATE Upper Layer Service (see Figure 7.4-1) that include:

The A-RELEASE and A-ABORT Services defined in PS3.8 shall be used for the termination of an Association.


The rules defining how the Association Services are used by a DIMSE Service User are defined in Annex D.

7.4.1 Association Establishment

The A-ASSOCIATE Service is invoked by a DIMSE Service User to establish an Association with a peer DIMSE Service User. Association establishment is always the first phase of DICOM Message Exchange.

The initiating DIMSE Service User and the responding DIMSE Service User shall include Application Association Information on the request and response primitive respectively. The meaning of this parameter is Application Context specific. For more information on the use of the Application Association Information, see Annex D.

DICOM PS3.7 2024b - Message Exchange