GE Healthcare announces results from ongoing evaluation of Gemstone Spectral Imaging

GE Healthcare today announced results from its ongoing customer evaluation of Gemstone Spectral Imaging, a technology aiming to enhance CT’s diagnostic capability. Gemstone Spectral Imaging is an available option for Discovery CT750HD systems and is being delivered to customers worldwide.

One major clinical advantage of Spectral Imaging is to aid in the characterization of lesions. It introduces a new ability to quantify and separate materials – such as calcium, iodine and water - and helps clinicians determine whether lesions are enhancing. In cases where Spectral Imaging avoids additional diagnostic tests, healthcare costs and patient anxiety can be avoided.

“Spectral imaging marks a new generation of CT imaging – allowing for an effective and efficient diagnosis,” said Dr. Gladys Lo, Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology at Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital. “Historically, CT development has focused on increased slices and faster scan times, but we believe more useful information allows high quality diagnosis at potentially lower cost.

GE worked with leading institutions including Mayo Clinic, Massachusetts General Hospital in the United States, the Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital, and Keio University in Japan in the process of developing this technology. Clinical use has already identified a number of benefits to routine CT practice.

Accurate Diagnosis: Characterizing lesions

Indeterminate lesions are most common in the abdomen region, such as the kidney, liver and lung. According to the American Journal of Radiology, more than half of small lesions are indeterminate by CT abdominal exams. In cases where lesions cannot accurately be interpreted, this leads to additional testing, such as a PET or MR scan, to make a definitive diagnosis.

Spectral Imaging provides a clear and comprehensive story so that clinicians can confidently solve problems. Using two different energy levels, this technology is able to distinguish one type of tissue from another and offer additional anatomical and functional information that expedites a CT evaluation. With Spectral Imaging, clinicians have the ability to make well-informed decisions and potentially reduce the cost associated with additional tests (hyperlink to econ value prop).

"Spectral CT addresses issues related to poor contrast resolution of small abdominal lesions,” said Gary Israel, MD, Yale University School of Medicine. “We believe this type of technology could serve as a game changer for abdominal imaging.”

Clearer Images: Reduction of artifacts impairing full anatomical view

Since its invention, CT imaging has dealt with image artifact created by objects in the body such as major bones and metallic implants used in joint and spinal surgery. These artifacts obstruct the clinicians’ view of anatomy. Gemstone Spectral Imaging has the unique ability to derive images as though they came from a single energy source and this capability significantly removes these artifacts.

"CT imaging of the posterior fossa has experienced challenges related to beam hardening artifact from the petrous bones,” said Michael Lev M.D., Director of Emergency Neuroradiology at Massachusetts General Hospital. “With spectral CT imaging, we have demonstrated marked reduction in such artifacts and are pleased with low contrast performance.

“We have experienced strong demand for Spectral Imaging, with orders from hospitals seeking to improve patient care in many countries across the world,” said Steve Gray, Vice President of CT, GE Healthcare. “In 2008 we delivered the Discovery CT750 HD providing High Definition, low dose imaging for the first time. Now, as clinicians are able to use Gemstone Spectral Imaging, the Discovery CT750 HD is further advancing patient care.”

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