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These new MR features promise to help with the COVID imaging backlog

by Lisa Chamoff, Contributing Reporter | September 21, 2020
GE Healthcare AIR Recon DL
From the September 2020 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

Speeding up workflow while retaining image quality and increasing patient comfort has always been a priority for imaging departments. But with the novel coronavirus causing a case backlog and requiring a longer than normal cleaning process in between patients, decreased scan times are more important than ever.

Many manufacturers have been looking at how to keep caseloads flowing smoothly while improving outcomes using MR. Here’s a look at what’s new in MR scanners, software and coils and some new features that will help during the slow road back to business as usual.

Canon Medical Systems USA
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The company received FDA 510(k) clearance for its AiCE Deep Learning Reconstruction recently for use with its Vantage Orian 1.5T scanner, and earlier this year for the Galan 3T.

The technology provides higher signal-to-noise images with enhanced resolution, without sacrificing scan time, for brain and knee scans, said Tom Naypauer, solutions marketing leader for MR at Canon Medical Systems USA.

“Normally there are trade-offs within that triangle,” Naypauer said. “It’s normally felt in 1.5T.”

Canon Medical's Compressed SPEEDER MR Technology, a form of compressed sensing technology designed to reduce scan time, helping with COVID-19 backlogs, was cleared for the Galan earlier this year and for the Orian in June.

“Technologies like Compressed SPEEDER that provide faster scans could be one tool to increase throughput so you can help accommodate potential surge in volumes” Naypauer said.

GE Healthcare
In April, GE Healthcare received FDA clearance for its AIR Recon DL reconstruction software, which provides what the company says is the industry’s first MR image reconstruction using deep learning for all anatomies.

“The software can be used to reconstruct images of any body part on a 3T scanner,” while other solutions are mostly anatomy based, said Jie Xue, president and chief executive officer of the Global MR Business for GE Healthcare.

“Image quality and scan time is usually a tradeoff,” Xue said. “We really take the balance between the image quality and the scan time to another level.”

The technology is available on the company’s SIGNA Premier, Architect and Pioneer systems as well as Discovery MR 750 and 750W systems through an upgrade.

The product should be able to help our customers to quickly reduce their procedure backlog caused by COVID-19.

“We never anticipated COVID,” Xue said, “but we’re glad we had an offering that can help clinicians.”

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