The Unmet Needs of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a technology that uses magnetic signals to show the different tissues inside the body creating non-invasive images of the inside of the human body. In 2009 there were over 69 million MRI scans performed in the U.S. alone. The imaging procedure is used commonly for diagnosis for every part of the body, from the brain to the knee. With each scan costing an average of $2500 and MRI equipment priced well above $1 million there is a need to ensure that each scan produces as much information as possible given the high cost per scan. Each scan also takes 30 minutes to 3 hours depending on the type of scan and resolution needed. A technology that can reduce scan times and increase image resolution would make a large impact on the costs and time consumption associated with MRI scans.
Rapid Steady-state T2 MRI Scan
A unique method has been demonstrated for improved resolution and faster MRI imaging. By using 2-dimensional tailored RF pulses MRI images were created showing excellent gray/white matter contrast compared to the standard protocol on a 3T MRI. These results indicate the capability of rapid steady-state T2-weighted imaging. The capability to perform rapid high resolution MRI scans has been demonstrated on a human and the need to improve the current state of imaging has been met.
Applications and Advantages
- Faster steady-state T2-weighted MRI images
- Robust snapshot MRI imaging with high signal to noise ratio Advantages
- Reduces time of scan, therefore reducing erroneous scans and repeats
- Increases contrast and resolution of images using current equipment
- Reduces cost by minimizing need for extra scans by increasing quality of initial scan