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Tips for MR coil maintenance

by Lisa Chamoff, Contributing Reporter | September 14, 2022
From the September 2022 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

“For a head coil, the anterior portion should always be removed by pulling straight up,” Barczykowski said. “If the anterior is removed at an angle, the fragile connections between the various sections could easily become damaged or fail prematurely.”

Problem: Broken coil body

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Solution: Using only approved and recommended cleaning solutions and procedures and proper handling

“Using unapproved cleaning solution could weaken the coil body and make it prone to breaking,” Palathinkara said.

Barczykowski notes that traditionally, the infection control and supply chain departments determine what chemicals and disinfectants are chosen based on efficacy and cost, not product compatibility.

“Looking at several popular brands of disinfectant wipes found in healthcare facilities, the intended use is ‘disinfection of hard, nonporous surfaces,’” Barczykowski said. “Cables, strain reliefs, and flexible foam coverings are anything but hard and non-porous. Even within the scope of approved chemicals, there are those which are more device-friendly than others. If facilities are experiencing what they believe to be premature wear to the physical components of their MR coils, it may be time to assess the chemicals in-use in the MR suite.”

Proper handling is also key. Technologists should not place coils down inside the bore.

“Techs too often forget they’ve placed it there, and as the height of the table gets adjusted, the coil gets cracked in the process,” Jones said.

Problem: Stress fractures and tears in flex coils

Solution: Use coils properly

When using a flex coil, it’s important for technologists to never attempt to adjust the position of the patient by moving the coil, as it may cause both physical and internal electromechanical damage, Barczykowski said.

Problem: Contrast left in the socket groups

Solution: Don’t allow contrast to get into the socket group

“It dries like cement,” Jones said.

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