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High performance 3.0T spine imaging with Ingenia

Best Practice
Casselman, Jan, M.D., Ph.D. AZ St-Jan AV Brugge • Belgium

 Jan Casselman, MD, PhD
Jan Casselman, MD, PhD

AZ St.-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV (Belgium) is now doing all its spine work at 3.0T. With Ingenia’s dStream architecture for digitized high performance, efficient workflow and excellent image quality, 3.0T spine imaging is no longer a challenge.

High resolution and excellent fat suppression

Jan W. Casselman, MD, PhD, says, “Spine work used to be one of the weakest points of 3.0T in the past, but currently all our spine MRI is done on Ingenia 3.0T and we get excellent examinations. We get very good fat suppression from the cervical spine down to the lumbar spine. Also total spine imaging is outstanding; we get very homogeneous images with few artifacts over these large fields of view. We also obtain good results in patients who have metal implants from previous surgery.”

“We use the high signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) provided by the 3.0T field strength and dStream for improving image quality and resolution in order to see more detail than was possible on 1.5T in a similar examination time. Therefore, since we have Ingenia 3.0T, we confidently moved all our spine MRI exams from 1.5T to Ingenia 3.0T.”

“We can also easily perform good quality diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) in the spine. We add that when we see suspicious lesions in the spine, in case of medullar compression or for patients with potential medullar infarctions. In the latter, axial DWI is used with good results although it is known that this is difficult in the neck and thoracic area due to motion of the nearby structures.”
Dr. Casselman is also performing spine angiography now, which was problematic on other systems. “We were never satisfied with the results,” he says. “But now with Ingenia 3.0T we can acquire very beautiful MR angiography of the spine. We use the power of 3.0T to make thinner slices or more slices in the same time, giving us better resolution. And together with fewer artifacts, that opens the door to excellent MR angiography.”


View clinical Case Studies:

dStream coils streamline workflow

“In terms of workflow, Ingenia’s integrated Posterior coil provides a huge improvement,” says Dr. Casselman. “This coil is integrated in the table, so it’s always there for spine and abdomen. The techs love it, as they don’t have to change coils all the time, and the system automatically uses the right part of the coil. It makes life so much easier for them. We can now do all of our spine scans in high resolution using this integrated Posterior coil. We do not add the Anterior coils as the little extra signal does not outweigh the extra effort to put on these extra coils. For cervical spine, we just add the dS HeadNeckSpine coil.”

“The tiltable dS HeadNeckSpine coil is very helpful, especially for patients with thoracic kyphosis who cannot lie down flat. In elderly patients we see that regularly. This coil enables such patients to comfortably stay close to the coil. If routine non-tiltable coils are used, the coil stays down and when the neck goes up, farther away from the coil, this will cause a drop in SNR, resulting in longer sequences and exam times in order to recover some of the lost signal.”

High performance spine imaging becomes simple

SmartSelect automatically chooses which elements to use for highest signal intensity, which enhances workflow and benefits quality. “In the past, if the techs didn’t specify the proper coil elements, images became dark at the edge, or at the interface between the thoracic and lumbar spine segments due to too low signal,” says Dr. Casselman. “Now it’s automatic, which speeds up the examination, and that means our patients aren’t on the table for as long.”


“For us, Ingenia 3.0T is crucial,” concludes Dr. Casselman. “Our spine work can be done in the same way, but better or faster than we did at 1.5T. As in many institutions, spine constitutes 30% to 40% of the workload, and we could not afford to move that to a 3.0T system if the spine is not consistently good. And that is where Ingenia has really made a difference.&rdquo

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May 9, 2014

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Best Practice
Ingenia 3.0T
Cervical spine, dS HeadNeckSpine coil, dStream, DWI, Lumbar spine, MRA, Musculoskeletal, Neuro, SmartSelect, Spine, Thoracic spine, Vascular, workflow

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