Siemens Healthcare has announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared two new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) applications – Simultaneous Multi-Slice (SMS) and GOBrain – that are designed to dramatically reduce the time required for MRI examinations of the brain. Shorter scans are increasingly important at a time when brain scans account for approximately 1 out of every 4 MRI examinations, and when the number of brain MRI exams is expected to swell to 45 million worldwide this year.²
Using an innovative technique that acquires MR images simultaneously as opposed to sequentially, Siemens’ new SMS application reduces 2D acquisition times by as much as a factor of 8. Using SMS, physicians can reduce the length of MRI brain examinations, which can vary significantly, to times compatible with the clinical routine (e.g., up to 68 percent for diffusion tensor imaging, or DTI³) and bring clinical relevance to advanced neurological applications. SMS can be used in the treatment of patients who possess limited tolerance for longer scan times, including pediatric or geriatric patients.4 In brain surgery cases, SMS may facilitate surgical mapping and improve efficiency in the OR.
Enabling clinically validated brain examinations in just five minutes,¹ the new GOBrain application allows acquisition of clinically essential image orientations and contrasts with a single button-push, thanks in part to Siemens’ high-channel density coils and the company’s unique MRI scanning software DotGO. GOBrain helps improve patient throughput and potentially reduce costs per scan. Shorter scan times, which are better tolerated by patients, can help curb lengthy and potentially expensive rescans as well as potentially reduce sedation.5
“Siemens Healthcare is excited to offer the Simultaneous Multi-Slice (SMS) and GOBrain applications, which can enable our customers to dramatically cut MRI scan acquisition times and provide a significantly more patient-friendly brain MRI examination,” says Murat Gungor, Vice President of Magnetic Resonance at Siemens Healthcare.
The SMS application is available on Siemens’ MAGNETOM Aera 1.5T, MAGNETOM Skyra 3T, and MAGNETOM Prisma and Prismafit 3T MRI systems. The GOBrain application is featured on the MAGNETOM Aera and MAGNETOM Skyra systems.
¹ Achieved on a MAGNETOM Skyra with the Head 32 coil. Total examination time can take up to 6 minutes, depending on system field strength and coil density.
² Calculation represents assumption based on numbers from 2014 IMV Market Report.
³ For Diffusion MRI measured on Siemens’ MAGNETOM Prisma with Head/Neck 54 coil.
4 MR scanning has not been established as safe for imaging fetuses and infants under 2 years of age. The responsible physician must evaluate the benefit of the MRI examination in comparison to other imaging procedures.
5 Prakkamakul, et al. Qualitative comparison of a 5-minute general optimized brain protocol and a conventional magnetic resonance protocol for brain imaging. Manuscript submitted for publication.