Technology | August 01, 2013

Agfa Introduces MUSICA2 Catheter Visualization for DR Applications

New option provides clear visualization of catheters for efficient, confident line placement evaluation

August 1, 2013 — Agfa HealthCare has announced the North American launch of its MUSICA2 catheter processing software. Designed to increase the visibility of peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) lines and other low-contrast, tube-like structures such as endotracheal or feeding tubes in general radiology applications, catheter processing is a new option within MUSICA2 image processing available in both new and existing Agfa HealthCare DR (digital radiography) and CR (computed radiography) systems with NX workstation.

The catheter visualization software was on display at the annual meeting of the Association for Medical Imaging Management (AHRA) in Minneapolis, July 28-31.

Radiographic evaluation of PICC line placement

Mobile DR and CR images are frequently used by specialists at the bedside, post-insertion, to confirm ideal placement of critical care catheters such as PICC lines. Specialized image-processing algorithms in the MUSICA2 catheter processing software are tuned to enhance the visibility of the fine, translucent catheter material in a way that improves edge and tip detection. This allows for high clinical confidence and immediate assessment of the line placement.

“Radiographic evaluation of PICC line placement has historically been one of the most challenging aspects of critically ill patient care. Agfa HealthCare is pleased that our advanced image processing capabilities can now make this process much easier for both the clinician and the patient,” said Greg Cefalo, U.S. digital imaging unit business manager, Agfa HealthCare. “Dense areas in the radiograph and/or complex anatomical structures can easily mask the PICC line, making it difficult and time consuming to verify the exact placement. We’ve created a special version of MUSICA2 image processing that instantly enhances the catheter detail, causing the line to pop in the image and be clearly identified; this eliminates time-consuming reprocessing and, more importantly, can reduce the need for additional patient exposures.”

Reduced exam time and patient exposure

MUSICA2 image processing shows soft tissue and boney detail in a single image, across the entire dynamic range, without having to make manual adjustments or windowing or leveling the image in most cases. With a single click, the catheter processing automatically creates a second image with enhanced detail so there is little or no need for manual reprocessing, thus increasing productivity. Overall, this reduces both exam time and patient dose/exposure. In addition to lowering the dose delivered to the patient in accordance with the ALARA principle (as low as reasonably achievable), patient comfort is supported with a clear, immediate visualization of the line placement.

MUSICA2 is an image processing software known for producing high image quality even at low exposure levels. The company's NX workstation is designed by and for technologists for optimized workflow and connectivity. Part of all Agfa HealthCare DR and CR solutions, MUSICA2 image processing automatically analyzes the characteristics of each image and optimizes the processing independent of user input and exposure levels. MUSICA2 image processing is unaffected by the presence of collimation or direct X-ray exposure in the image background and produces consistent, high quality results.

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