· Fall’s Hottest Accessories
· Tianjin Medical University Evaluating CTLM System
· MRI Table Pads Increase Comfort During Biopsies
· Research Alert: MRI in Head and Neck Cancer Detection

Fall’s Hottest Accessories

Enhanced Non-Magnetic IV Infusion Pump for MRI
New from Covidien Ltd, St Louis, are several enhancements to the company’s MRidium MRI Infusion System, the industry’s only nonmagnetic intravenous (IV) infusion pump. Designed to address the challenges of the MR environment, the pump now boasts new features to help operators administer IV medication more efficiently.

Covidien’s enhancements (above) to the company’s MRidium MRI Infusion System are designed to help operators administer intravenous medications more efficiently. MEDRAD’s PRES Pressure-Rated Extension Set (below) is the only extension set rated for CT power injection.

Compatible with magnets up to 3T and cleared for operation at the 10,000 Gauss Line, MRidium helps shorten the distance between the pump and the patient, eliminating the need for cumbersome workarounds designed to keep traditional IV pumps outside the magnetic fields of MRI systems. The newest version of MRidium’s software contains a library of drugs commonly initiated in the MRI suite, along with an integrated dose rate calculator to aid in accurate and efficient dispensing of medication.

Other key capabilities include the ability to deliver a bolus in the drug-calculator mode while the pump is running; the ability to deliver drugs in volumes of less than 1 mL, particularly useful in pediatric dosing; and the administration of drugs in volume-over-time mode, which is important for some cardiac MR stress test studies. The system even features a wireless remote control, enabling medical professionals to operate it from outside the control room.

“The MRidium Infusion Pump is the state-of-the-art intravenous infusion pump in the MRI environment,” said Keira P. Mason, MD, director of radiology anesthesia at Children’s Hospital Boston. “It is easy to use and accurate, and it has preprogrammed drug libraries—all of which make it appropriate for the delivery of an intravenous sedative or general anesthetic.”

Pressure-Rated Extension Set for CT Power Injection
New from MEDRAD Inc, Warrendale, Pa, is the PRES Pressure-Rated Extension Set, the only extension set rated for CT power injection and specifically approved for MEDRAD CT contrast injection systems. The disposable tube set, which attaches the patient catheter and the power injector tubing, meets the FDA’s recommendation that only venous access devices compatible with the high pressures achieved by power injection should be used.

Extension sets that are not rated for use with power injectors can leak or rupture under the high pressures and fast flow rates of CT imaging procedures; extension set ruptures can then contaminate the scan room and personnel with blood and contrast media. PRES reduces the risk of this rupture during powered injection of contrast agent or saline.

“Power injecting contrast media into the patient through venous access devices is often a requirement for accurate CT imaging, and as the FDA recommends, clinicians should be using high-pressure-tolerant disposable extension sets like the new PRES to reduce rupture risk,” said Cliff Kress, senior vice president of MEDRAD’S CT Business Unit. “PRES will help customers reduce the risk of extension-set ruptures and avoid associated inconvenience and downtime.”

Additionally, MEDRAD introduced a complementary product in the form of custom adhesive tape strips designed to help clinicians use PRES quickly and easily. HandiSTRIPS secure the catheter and extension set to the patient and can secure a bandage at the end of the procedure.

Tianjin Medical University Evaluating CTLM System

Imaging Diagnostic Systems Inc (IMDS), Ft Lauderdale, Fla, recently installed a CT Laser Mammography (CTLM) system at the Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital, the largest breast disease center in China. The Institute will host the fourth Congress of the World Society for Breast Health this month, and IDSI Beijing will present CTLM clinical findings at the meeting.

Both the incidence and the number of deaths from breast cancer have tripled in Chinese women; breast cancer is now the second most common cause of cancer-related death among this population. The incidence of breast cancer has increased 27% in 10 years, and 40% of the Chinese women diagnosed with breast cancer die within 5 years.

The Tianjin system is the second research system installed in China; the first, at Beijing’s Friendship Hospital, enabled CTLM clinical procedures to become listed on the regional schedule for patient payments. IMDS plans to expand the presence of its CTLM technology in China in a push to accelerate market adoption of the technique.

Research at Tianjin will be led by Professor Bao Runxian, director of radiology at the Cancer Institute. Data will be collected under three research protocols designed to improve current methods of addressing breast cancer imaging and treatment follow-up.

MRI Table Pads Increase Comfort During Biopsies

New from Patient Comfort Systems Inc, Hayward, Calif, are MRI table pad and patient-positioning sets developed specifically for use in stereotactic breast biopsies. The cushioning system, designed to enhance comfort during lengthy procedures, helps to reduce patient movement during critical exam times, which can interfere with the accuracy of imaging.

Patient Comfort Systems introduced MRI table pad and patient-positioning sets developed for use in stereotactic breast biopsies.

According to a study presented at the 2006 meeting of the Radiology Society of North America (RSNA), Oak Brook, Ill, repeat MRI sequences decreased by 56% and patient call-backs decreased by 50% across all MRI procedures when patients were scanned using Patient Comfort pads instead of MRI manufacturers’ traditional pads.

Patient Comfort pads contain open-cell foam with visco-elastic properties that provide advanced pressure management. The modular design of the kit enables flexibility in positioning a full range of patients, and the pads contain a permanent antimicrobial agent that protects against the threat of infection during imaging exams.

“Stereotactic biopsies are extremely time-consuming, and patient movement is not uncommon,” said Peter Rothschild, MD, founder of Patient Comfort Systems. “The ability to position patients comfortably is particularly important to successful exam completion. Procedures that must be repeated in their entirety or in part are a significant drain on a radiologist’s workflow and profitability, as well as unpleasant for the patient.”

The pad sets eliminate the need for gel and disposable patient pads.

Research Alert: MRI in Head and Neck Cancer Detection

Research funded in part by the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA), Oak Brook, Ill, shows that the high soft-tissue resolution of MR imaging can be better than CT at assessing spaces where CT imaging yields overlapping densities between muscles, edema, and tumor.

In the September issue of RSNA News, Laurie A. Loevner, MD, a full professor of radiology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, discusses her research on the use of MR in detecting cancers of the head and neck.