A Magnetic Resonance Imaging scan, more commonly known as an MRI, is a powerful diagnostic tool. The procedure is vital to the detection and diagnosis of many life-threatening conditions, including tumors, brain disease, heart conditions, and countless others. MRI scans lead to the diagnosis and treatment of detrimental and potentially fatal conditions. Thus, the potential benefits of an MRI scan are life-saving and are becoming increasingly exponential. So, it comes as little shock that over 30 million scans are done on a yearly basis in the United States alone.
However, there are recurring issues that have yet to be fully addressed. Throughout academic literature, it is reported that up to 37% of patients, undergoing an MRI scan, experience levels of anxiety, which in turn prevents 2% of scans from being completed. That is 600,000 scans a year. Now, with the recently released Medicare pricing data analyzed by NerdWallet Health, the average cost of an MRI in the US is $2,611. That means a loss of approximately $1.5 Billion (or $115,000 per machine) for the medical industry per year. So, what is the answer?
Sound Imaging Inc., in business since 1996, has, over the past few years, designed and developed an entire suite of accessories to limit or possibly eliminate patient anxiety and movement during MRI scans. The newly patented SAMM MD (Safety and Motion Monitoring with Motion Detection) system consists of a dual HD MRI patient bore CCTV system. The system visually and audibly alerts the patient and MRI technologist about motion and affords the technologist the option to automatically pause the MRI scanner during patient motion or movement. Combine those elements with the ability to fully integrate with MRI patient work-lists so patient videos are time-stamped and searchable to help reduce potential legal exposure, you have a system that is a must in the MRI suite.
Over 4 years in development, Sound Imaging’s SAMM MD (Safety and Movement Monitoring with Motion Detection) system was designed to address a “wish list” of issues brought up by the MRI Staff at Johns Hopkins Medical Center. SAMM MD implements patented hardware and software that integrates with the MRI scanner to:
- Movement or motion by the patient is optionally paused during the MRI scanner to help increase patient safety, reduce repeat scans, and increase image quality
- Visually and audibly alert the patient and MRI Technologist about motion
- Remotely/locally alert and record anyone entering the MRI room, one of the most dangerous rooms in a hospital or imaging center, 24/7
- Optionally record the MRI patient during their entire MRI scan, as soon as they enter the MRI room
- Allow MRI Technologists to actually “see their patients” in real time with MRI compatible HD video display
- Fully integrate with MRI patient worklist so patient videos are time-stamped and searchable to help reduce potential legal exposure
- Record videos that can be used to help with Technologist training to reduce claustrophobia and increase patient safety
Ultimately, the MRI is about the patient: their comfort, as well as their physical health. Being able to keep patients relaxed and focused on anything other than the MRI scan is beneficial to both the imaging center and the patient. Doesn't it make sense to make the patient happy while saving money?
Artificial intelligence has been a fascinating concept for years now. Although the technology has grown immensely over the last decade in various fields, including machine learning and also in narrow artificial intelligence, researchers still wonder if general or high-level artificial intelligence can be a reality, especially in radiology.
There is a lot of speculation about artificial intelligence in radiology, and computers replacing radiologists. Eliot Siegel, MD addresses the hype and myth created around artificial intelligence in radiology in his webinar titled “Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence: Hype, Myth Reality and How It Will Revolutionize the Practice of Quality Diagnostic Imaging”
Role of Artificial Intelligence in radiology in the near future?:
To understand how much of a role AI has to play in the near future, let's understand what AI is. AI is defined as the ability of a computer program or a machine to think and learn. It is also a field of study which tries to make computers "smart". In other words, it is the ability of a computer system to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as speech recognition, decision-making, etc. Siri, Alexa, and Google are some of the famous AI applications to name a few.
What is the scope of AI in radiology?
Mr. Siegal in his webinar says that the artificial intelligence that we have right now is just a narrow version of AI. Narrow Al can help identify or address one particular issue but still cannot perform tasks as precisely as a human. “It specializes in one area. So, you could go online and download a software program for free that would run practically on any computer that could beat the world chess champion Mag at chess, but that same program can’t beat a 5-year-old at tic-tac-toe because it is designed specifically for chess.” Says Mr. Siegal. To explain this he uses a picture from a famous Highlights Magazine.
What’s wrong with the picture?
As we can all see certain objects in the image are inappropriately placed. If you show this to a 5-year-old he might be able to identify what is wrong with the picture. The current AI can identify the objects in the picture, but can't identify what is wrong.
How does this picture justify the scope of AI in radiology? The current artificial intelligence may identify an organ in an MRI scan with immense accuracy, but the problem in radiology is not identifying the organ but figuring out what the flaw is, which takes years of practice for a radiologist himself. Can the current artificial intelligence fulfill this? To attain this precise level of decision making we need artificial general intelligence. The artificial general intelligence is as smart as a human and could replace a human completely.
Where are we with artificial general intelligence?
According to an artificial general intelligence conference, we are nowhere near the human level AI, and a survey conducted in the same conference seems to support the same fact. 42% say we can attain this by 2030, 24% say by 2050, 20% by 2100, 10% after 2100 and 2 % of them say we will never be able to achieve human-level artificial intelligence.
What is your take on artificial intelligence in radiology? Let us know in the comments below.
Also, stay tuned to our next post to know about Machine learning in radiology.
This is an adapted article from a webinar and the image is taken from an Online stock photo.
Our previous articles about shocking MRI accidents in the past have created quite a stir among MRI techs, patients, and radiologists. Why do MR accidents keep happening? How can Technology improve MRI safety?
This article will walk you through the various technological advancements that could improve an MRI room safety
The American College of Radiology recommends various safety procedures to keep your MRI facility and your patients safe. One of the most emphasized practice is gowning where the patient has to undergo two levels of the check from the MR techs to ensure they do not have any metal or ferromagnetic objects. But how far can you trust manual checking? If so, why do we have so many MRI accidents? Manual operations cannot be error free and that is why you need technology to solve the crisis. Our MRI specialists recommend that every facility should have a screening device. The popular tools to screen the patients completely are:
MRI hand-held metal detector: Save patients and staff from embarrassing and hazardous situations. The MRI Hand Held Metal Detector features large scan surface with sensitivity reduction switch. It is NOT MRI SAFE but it is To be used outside the MRI environment.
Are you worried about the price? Check it out at http://accessoriesformri.com/hikashop-menu-for-categories-listing/product/768-mri-hand-held-metal-detector
B. Screening Magnet :
This Powerful Handheld Magnet is ideal for Magnetic Resonance Screening/Sites to screen patients and devices for possible ferromagnetic properties prior to entering MRI environments Zones III and IV. The magnet itself is composed of a neodymium - a so-called rare earth magnet - that permits it to lose its strength extremely slowly.
For more details visit :
C. Tech Gate:
The Tech Gate, which is attached to the doorway and needs no human assistance. It screens or checks every person entering the room, only if they are metal-free does the tech gate allows them to enter the room.
Is the patient safe after the initial screenings? Even after the patient is safe to enter and there are no major potential risks involved, the patient still require constant monitoring. Infact experts say that the all the pathways, entrances and zone 4 should be under direct supervision and observation of MRI techs and security’s ? But again , Is this feasible just with manual help? Not always. So what accessories can help your facility to have a constant supervision or observation?
One of the best accessory for this is the Patient monitoring camera System-Motion detector commonly known as the SAMM-MD. Lets walk you through the best features of SAMM-MD and how it can turn your MR facility risk-free:
The SAMM-MD is High definition camera systems along with a motion detecting software which constantly monitors the patient during a scan and notifies the tech everytime the patient moves allowing him to pause the scan and attend the patient.
Not just that, The SAMM-MD constantly records every activity in Zone-4 and alerts the tech or security if there is any suspicious activity or Movement in the Zone 4 of MRI room.
For more details visit http://www.samm-md.com
MRI has been the most important and trust-able tool since its invention , But the recent incident about the death of a 32 year old man in an MRI machine is calling the safety of the machine into question!
Is this the first time such MRI accidents are happening? The FDA report says that there was 310% increase in MRI accidents from 2004 to 2008, after which the MRI accidents have reduced in number but still hasn’t stopped. Let's look back into the most shocking MRI accidents that has happened in the past.
This image was taken from this online source.
6 year old boy died in a freak MRI accident in 2001-new York.
A 6 year old boy lost his life to the MRI machine when the machine's powerful magnetic field jerked a metal oxygen tank across the room, crushing the child's head. The tank fractured his skull and was seriously injured. Michael colombini , then died of injuries in the hospital.
For full news visit: http://www.nytimes.com/2001/07/31/nyregion/boy-6-dies-of-skull-injury-during-mri.html
The picture is taken from this online source
2. 79 year old War veteran died after an MRI accident.
So is the story of a 79 year old Dan Mahony who died after an MRI accident in Medford in 2009.
The 79 year old man walked into the MRI room with his metal walker. After he entered the room the magnetic field was strong that the walker yanked from under Mahony, he fell and hit his head on the floor. 2 days later this he suffered a stroke , 2 months after which he died. The incident was followed by arguments and debate that went on between Mahony’s family and the hospital , as the hospital failed to take responsibility for his stroke as he had multiple risk factor for a stroke. The reason for his stroke still unknown, however the accident could have been avoided if the MRI safety rules were followed.
3. Police officer’s gun flies from his hand as he enters the MRI room.
A police officer in Illinois was investigating a burglary inside a doctors system, the gun flew away from his hand responding to the magnetic force. Since there is no way to quickly disable the magnetic force, the firearm remained immovable and no one was allowed inside the building.
For full story visit : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2276141/Police-officer-service-gun-wrenched-hand-MRI-machine-responding-burglary-medical-center.html
The picture is taken from this online source
4.2003, a New Mexico woman injured in head in a MRI accident.
In 2003, a New Mexico woman sued a Los Alamos hospital, claiming the magnetic pull of an MRI caused an oxygen tank to hit her in the back.
There are various other MRI accidents that have happened in the past causing minor and major injuries. There might also be some accidents that went unreported and unnoticed.
If monitored properly , MRI is on the best diagnosis method.What are the best practices to stay safe with MRI and make the best use of the cool machine? Stay tuned to our next blog post to know the best MRI safety practices.
Since its emergence in the 1970s, MRI has become a vital tool for diagnosing, and despite various innovations and tools in the healthcare, MRI still is one of the mostly widely used tool for diagnosing. Although it’s the most trusted diagnosing method, this should not preclude a clear understanding of risks and limitations. Research says that the force of the device's 10-ton magnet is about 30,000 times as powerful as Earth's magnetic field, and 200 times stronger than a common refrigerator magnet. And if handled without care it could turn as life-threatening experience.
one such sad example is the incident that happened on 28th January in Mumbai, India recently. A man got sucked into an MRI machine at a Mumbai hospital and died minutes after he walked into the room carrying an oxygen cylinder. The family says it was a case of massive negligence, since the machine was turned on when it was supposed to be switched off and the tech had assured them it was safe to go inside. Well, though its highly debatable whom to be blamed in the issue there are certain rules that every MRI room or imaging center has to follow. Nevertheless, to recollect the death of a 6-year old boy who died due to a skull injury in a similar MRI accident in New York.
There are many such MRI accidents that happens due to sheer negligence. What can you do to prevent such accidents, here are rules that our MRI specialists suggest to avoid MRI accidents.
Use Safety Signs:
ASTM International’s standard F2503  for the marking of devices brought into the MR environment should be used. Also MRI Safety signs should be used outside MRI rooms to create awareness.
Shop for MRI safe signs and stickers https://www.mriextras.com/product-category/mri-safety/mri-safety-mri-safety/
As the MRI has evolved over the years , so are the accessories that work MRI systems.
One such must have MRI safety accessory is the screening magnets. These screening magnets are very similar to the ones that you see in airports to detect metals. But one very customised accessory is the Tech Gate , which is attached to the doorway and needs no human assistance. It screens or checks every person entering the room , only if they are metal-free does the tech gate allows them to enter the room.
MRI safe accessories :
The accessories that needs to be used in a MRI room should be MRI safe or MRI conditional.
Not all accessories in a hospital are MRI safe or conditional. There are various online stores that is dedicated for MRI safe and conditional accessory. MRI room needs all the accessories or tools that any other room in a hospital might need, but with a special requirement that the MRI room accessories should be MRI safe. You can find all that you need for an MRI room @www.mriextras.com. All the products here are tested and are MRI safe or MRI conditionals.
Headaches these days are common among children and it leaves the parents worried. A normal headache could have its root causes based in meningitis, brain neoplasms and intracranial hemorrhage. Hence, a lot of children these days undergo neuro Imaging. The recent results and reports say that in majority cases the reports are normal, however, it leaves them with maximum exposure to radiations and unnecessary sedations. There are various tools on which the scientists and researchers are working on today in order to review the accuracy and role of neuroimaging and also to manage pediatric diagnosis. So what’s the best and proven methods for diagnosis? Even today, it’s MRI’s and CT’s! It may still lead to children feeling the anxiety and being claustrophobic under the magnet during the process. Hence they need sedation to keep them still. There are a number of accessories that helps the children feel comfortable and safe during a scan and can avoid the use of sedation.
This is an adapted article. To read more on this study, visit research article. The picture is from an online stock photo.
There are number of accessories that take care of the children’s needs during a MRI scan and these are top MRI accessories that every imaging center/ facility or a MRI room should have :
MRI Stereo: Our pneumatic MRI stereo system not only allows communication between the technologist and patient during the exam, but also plays music for patient comfort and enjoyment. Relaxation plays a vital role in providing successful imaging, and this MRI Stereo System can greatly calm a patient's nerves and avoids the need for sedation. Learn more at http://mristereo.com/
MRI Visors: We have the industry’s first battery operated movie goggles for use in MRI’s with fields up to 3T. Our MRI Visors mimics the relaxing, immersive experience of a movie theater, focusing a patient’s attention away from the noise environment and allowing them to relax during the MRI scan. Have more questions? Give us a call at (866) 530-7850 and we will be happy to assist you.. Give us a call at (866) 530-7850 and we will be happy to assist you.
Samm Systems: Our Best Seller seller product is SAMM systems. It is a revolutionary MRI camera system which will allow you to conveniently monitor your patients while they are inside the magnet. While the camera can be mounted just about anywhere in the magnet room, the live feed from the MRI video camera system is sent to a high resolution LCD monitor which directly delivers to you excellent quality videos making monitoring far more easier and spotless. Find out more at About - Samm Systems.
Samm MD: Our newest innovation is SAMM-MD - a CCTV for your MRI rooms that detects motion. So what does the Samm MD bring to the MRI room? It has enhanced features like touch screen monitor, motion detection software and HD camera. Check out more at http://www.samm-md.com/
It seems like it's common knowledge that gets spread that if you have metal in your body it's dangerous to get an MRI scan. This may not necessarily be the case anymore, at least when it comes to cardiac implants.
A recent study led by Dr. Joseph J. Cavallo with the Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, Yale School of Medicine published their findings in regards to MRI patients with cardiac implants.
According to the study, Medicare and Medicaid patients with implanted electronic cardiac devices are undergoing significantly less MRI scans, despite evidence showing that MRI scans will present no harm to the patients. This is likely due to invalid and outdated information with MRI safety influencing health insurance policy. MRI safety has come a long way when it comes to patient care, and it seems health insurance is trailing behind.
Here at Sound Imaging, we take pride in providing excellent MRI experience with top of the line MRI safety. Explore our MRI conditional cameras, SAMM System and SAMM MD, or our MRI Stereo and MRI Visors that provide patient comfort while not compromising on MRI safety.
To learn more about this research, please visit the Journal of the American College of Radiology. This is an adapted article. Picture is taken from this source.
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Imaging is a common method used in emergency rooms to diagnose appendicitis. Like with many illnesses, often the effects are unseen on the surface, so imaging is crucial to make sure proper treatment takes place. A recent study looked into the efficacy of MRI scans versus CT scans when it came to appendicitis.
While the findings show that there was no significant difference between the two modalities and accuracy and speed, it is important to note MRI is a good option to reduce radiation effects. However, one of the most common complaints when it comes to MRI over CT, is the noise and claustrophobia of an MRI scanner. Fortunately these are problems with easy solutions.
Here at Sound Imaging, we have a variety of options for MRI patient comfort with two of our MRI devices, MRI Visors and MRI Stereo. These two devices are excellent options when it comes to helping patients, especially pediatric patients, overcome anxiety about their MRI scan.
To learn more about this study, please visit ARJ Online. This is an adapted article. Picture is taken from this online source.
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According to a new study, about one third, or more specifically 29.14%, of the time spent at your MRI appointment is wasted time. What is considered wasted time and how can we improve efficiency?
For this study at the two outpatient facilities, the research team split the time values into three categories, value-added time, business value-added time, or non–value-added time. The most frequent time waster was IV or port placement, and the most longest time waster was MRI arthrography where contrast was not accounted for during scheduling due to patient late arrival.
While this may not seem like such a concern on the surface, time adds up and this eats up business and potential patient time.
At Sound Imaging, we prioritize efficiency, whether it is making sure an MRI repair is fast and fixed while using our loaner program, or creating patient comfort devices that make the scanning process easier and safer, like with our MRI devices, Magnet Watch and MRI Stereo.
This is an adapted article. To learn more, please visit this AJR Online research article. Picture is taken from this online source.
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The mobile MRI unit for Guantanamo Bay has finally arrived at its destination after it's court order two years prior. Judge for the hearing of Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, an alleged Al Qaida mastermind, ordered an MRI scan for the accused after claims of brain damage during CIA interrogation. This MRI scan is needed in order to determine whether or not this trial will continue as a capital punishment trial.
The process for this trial has been long-lasting. While logistics play a large role, especially when overseas, it is important to note how similar this story can be for other mobile MRIs. Make sure to read the full story at this article to learn more about the implications for these Guantanamo patients.
At Sound Imaging, we aim to make our mobile MRI options as efficient and quick as possible. With us, there's no need to wait months to get your mobile MRI. Check out our preventative maintenance and MRI repairs as well to make sure your MRI scanner is in top shape.
This is an adapted article. To learn more, please visit this news story and picture is from this online source.
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MRI scanners need upgrades, just like any other machine out there. They get worn down, they go out of date or need some new features. This is why Canadian branch of Quinte Health Care at the Belleville MRI underwent an upgrade; everything except for the magnet was replaced.
As with most changes at hospitals, the motivator for the upgrade was to ensure quality patient care. Newer MRI machines usually allow for faster scans and quicker turn-around times. Upgrading your MRI scanner can also allow for higher quality image results, which allow for better diagnoses. Usually, MRI scanners are efficient for their first eight years, and after that point, it's good to consider if the time is right to upgrade.
Here at Sound Imaging, we are glad to see how healthcare keeps in mind the highest quality for patient care. While we don't work directly with patients, all of our MRI services and MRI devices are designed to ensure quality patient care. If your facility is looking for MRI upgrades, be sure to contact us to learn more about MRI repairs, MRI maintenance, or MRI equipment.
This is an adapted article. To learn more, please visit this online post, and the picture is from this online source.
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According to a new plan by UC Berkeley, it's about $13.4 million dollars to build a new generation MRI brain scanner.
UC Berkeley was awarded this amount by the National Institute of Health with the BRAIN Initiative grant to support neuroscience work and development. This new MRI brain scanner will be a 7T scanner, as seems to be the trend when it comes to MRI research, as shown in some of our previous blogs.
One of the reasons behind this build is to get better quality images; it's been noted usually the higher the Tesla, the higher quality the image when it comes to MRI scanners. The brain is already a complex system as it is, so using a high definition scanner is the solution to see these intricacies. UC Berkeley anticipates completion in 2019.
Here at Sound Imaging, we know most of us don't have millions lying around for an MRI scanner. This is why it's important to invest with repair and maintenance options when it comes to your MRI scanner. Here we offer cost-effective and budget friendly options for MRI repairs, MRI parts, and MRI services, like maintenance and installation.
To learn more about this, please visit this news article, and the picture is from this online source.
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Multiple sclerosis is a complex and long-spanning illness that affects up to 2.5 million people worldwide and 400,000 people in the United States. Symptoms tend to only show once in adulthood and progress as one age. However, MRI scans may be able to diagnose high-risk children before symptoms even show.
Researchers at Yale University School of Medicine have started preliminary studies into possible signs of MS. One such early sign that can lead to MS is 'radiologically isolated syndrome' or RIS, which are lesions that indicated a loss of myelin in the spinal fluid. After a number of scans and across 38 children volunteers, the research has some interesting results to share. For the first time ever, there may be a method to diagnose RIS in children and follow their treatment into adulthood, and possibility of MS.
At Sound Imaging, we are happy to see how MRI scans are helping pediatric patients across populations. We know how important pediatric imaging is when it comes to prevention and treatment. This is why our line of MRI devices, such as MRI Stereo and MRI Visors are such excellent solutions when it comes to children in the MRI suite.
This is an adapted article. To learn more, please visit this online article and the Neurology Journal research article. Picture is from this online source.
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7T Scanners have been around for a while. However, they have only been used for experimental and research purposes due to their high magnet strength.
Until now that is. The first 7T MRI scanner, a Magnetom Terra by Siemens, is approved for clinical use in the United States. The FDA checked for overall safety and quality for this new type of scanner. One of the most noticeable benefits for 7T scanners is the image quality. When compared to other images from 3T device, the 7T met and even exceeded image quality of the 3T images.
For now, the 7T Magnetom Terra is approved for patients that weigh more than 66 pounds, which means this will not be used for pediatric imaging, and for limited exams of head, arms, and legs. The magnet strength is still quite strong, so it is important to exercise safety and caution.
Here at Sound Imaging, we are excited to see how the imaging field continuously expands and improves. When looking at any new scanner, it is important to keep MRI safety in the forefront. This is why our MRI devices, the SAMM System and SAMM MD, the MRI camera systems, are excellent choices for a safe facility. Magnet Watch is also the option to make sure your MRI scanner is in the best condition.
This is an adapted article. To learn more, visit the FDA press release, and the picture is from this online source.
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One healthcare provider, Anthem, has created a new policy when it comes to MRI and CT scans. This provider will no longer cover non-urgent scans performed in either a hospital or outpatient facility will no longer be covered. The response is mixed from all sides.
Some worry on what will constitute as 'non-urgent' and others view this a play to reduce services to patients. On the other hand, some see this as a method to curb over-scanning and unnecessary costs. As with most things, there are truths on all sides. At the end of the day, what matters is providing the best patient care.
At Sound Imaging, we are curious to see how this new healthcare policy will play out for patients and providers. We aim to always keep healthcare innovative and efficient, especially when it comes to MRI devices. Create a relaxing experience for your patients with MRI Visors or MRI Stereo. Ensure MRI safety in your suite with Magnet Watch, SAMM System, or SAMM MD.
This is an adapted article. To learn more about this news, visit this website. Picture is credited to this online photo.
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