News | May 04, 2008

Latest in MRI, Multichannel Coil Technologies Hit ISMRM

May 5, 2008 – Siemens highlighted its 3T MAGNETOM Verio MR system that encompasses a 70 cm open bore and Tim technology, creating a wider space of an average of 30 cm between a patient's eyes and the magnet, allowing a wider space that makes it possible to scan patients who could not be examined with smaller bore MRI systems, at the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM) 2008 in Toronto, May 3-9.

With a system length of 173 cm, the MAGNETOM Verio is currently the shortest 3T MRI system on the market worldwide, while having the footprint of a 1.5T MRI system, according to Siemens. The system is equipped with a lightweight magnet of six tons, and because of its smaller dimensions and lower weight, the installation costs for the MAGNETOM Verio are minimized. Also operational costs are reduced, due to the system's zero Helium boil-off technology.

With Tim (Total imaging matrix) technology, coil setup for procedures on the MAGNETOM Verio is reportedly simple and acquisition times are significantly reduced. Up to 102 integrated matrix coil elements and up to 32 independent radiofrequency channels enable advanced clinical applications on the MAGNETOM Verio, which can allow physicians to evaluate complex pathologies quickly and reliably. Advanced applications can be performed as part of the daily routine, like syngo DTI (Diffusion Tensor Imaging), which provides complete 3D views of neuronal fibers in a few easy steps.

TrueForm Design integrated on the MAGNETOM Verio was developed to meet the challenges of imaging at 3T. Incorporating TrueForm Design affects a wide variety of applications including body, breast, orthopedic, and neuro applications by improving the consistency of signal intensities in the image, maintaining a consistent level of chemical fat suppression, and minimizing distortions at the edges of the images.

Also on showcase is the MAGNETOM ESSENZA, an MRI system that can reportedly coast as much as $500,000 less than other new 1.5T systems, according to the company. In the meantime, the first systems have been installed worldwide. Sites are running in Europe, Asia and the U.S. If the system is replacing an existing MRI, it can reportedly reduce energy consumption by up to 50 percent thanks to its innovative high-performance electronics. The magnet has zero Helium boil-off, so there is no need to regularly refill the expensive cooling substance, and the system is always ready for operation.

At the ISMRM, Siemens will introduce new high-end, multichannel coils for various applications. The new coils are based on the Siemens Tim technology and have up to 32 channels. This ultra-high "density" of coil elements results in increased signal-to-noise-ratio (SNR), as well as higher imaging speed with higher acceleration factors in parallel imaging (iPAT).

The newly developed 32-channel head coil is developed for advanced neurology, where speed and sensitivity are of the essence. The coil offers an open view that works to increase patient comfort and is also beneficial for visual stimulation experiments included in fMRI examinations. With the new 32-channel body coil, cardiac and abdominal imaging can be conducted in a single breath hold, in all four dimensions (i.e., high-spatial and temporal resolution).

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