Fastest diagnostic 3T MRI offers greater accuracy and a superior image

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Mercy Medical Center has acquired the Philips Ingenia Elition 3T MRI, the fastest diagnostic magnetic resonance imaging technology available. The 3T MRI was installed and is now operational, said Brad M. Cogan, M.D., Chair of the Department of Radiology at Mercy.

MRI is a technology that uses specially designed strong magnets -; between 10,000 and 20,000 times the strength of Earth's magnetic field -; to take images of the organs and structures inside the human body. A tesla is the unit of measurement quantifying the strength of a magnetic field. A 3T MRI generates a magnetic field that is twice as strong as a normal MRI, and 10 to 15 times as strong as open MRI scanners.

This state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment will provide services for about 9,600 patients per year. The 3T MRI offers greater accuracy and a superior image. Patients will notice significantly less noise than is common in most MRI machines, and will further benefit from reduced time from diagnosis to treatment."

Dr. Brad M. Cogan, M.D., Chair of the Department of Radiology, Mercy Medical Center

"We are extremely pleased to be able to offer this new technology for the benefit of our patients. Patients will appreciate the immersive audio-visual experience, as the 3T MRI provides advanced audio and visual components to allow patients greater control and comfort during their scan," said Dr. David N. Maine, president and CEO, Mercy Health Services, Mercy Medical Center.

3T MRIs can have a larger and shorter magnet bore, the section of the machine in which the patient will lay still. This means patients with claustrophobia have more space and are less likely to request sedation. Larger patients will have an easier time getting a high quality scan because they can fit more easily into the MRI machine.

MRI scans can vary depending on what is being imaged. The longer it takes to conduct a scan, the greater chance the resulting image will be poor.

"The 3T MRI is faster, so the scan is completed more quickly. That's important because the longer the patient is in the scanner, the more they may move and the resulting image can degrade," Dr. Cogan said.

The new machine features dedicated coil technology for extremity imaging of the shoulder, hand, wrist, foot, ankle and knee.

"MRIs are well suited to scan conditions affecting the brain, spine, and musculoskeletal systems. But in addition to that, 3T MRI can scan for new conditions like prostate cancer," Dr. Cogan said.

"The addition of 3T MRI is a significant upgrade to Mercy's Imaging department and represents an advancement in technology that benefits patients and clinicians alike," Dr. Cogan added.

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