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Excellent results after first Conversion to Achieva in Japan

Best Practice
Kanegae, Kakuko, M.D. Keiyu-Kai Sapporo Hospital Japan
Itoh, Kazuo, MD Keiyu-Kai Sapporo Hospital Japan

Keiyu-Kai Sapporo Hospital (Hokkaido, Japan) was the first to choose a smart way to get an Achieva by taking advantage of Philips' attractive new Conversion to Achieva program that avoids magnet exchange. Converting the old Intera magnet into a state-of-the-art Achieva 1.5T A-series saves cost and reduces rebuilding time.
 From left to right: Kakuko Kanagae, MD, Kazuo Itoh, MD and Mr. Ogawa
From left to right: Kakuko Kanagae, MD, Kazuo Itoh, MD and Mr. Ogawa

The Conversion to Achieva program enables radiology departments to transform their current Philips Intera 1.5T or Gyroscan NT into an Achieva 1.5T A-Series without changing the magnet, and without the disruption and expense of completely reconstructing their MRI suite.

State-of-the-art technology to maintain the competitive edge

"We're a relatively small hospital specializing in oncology - mainly esophageal and colon cancer - and we've been working with an Intera 1.5T system for around 6 years," says Kuzuo Itoh, MD, director of the hospital's radiology center.

"We wanted to be able to take full advantage of diffusion weighted imaging, which had some limitations on our previous system," explains Kakuko Kanagae, MD, the center's main radiologist for CT, PET and MRI. "Because we had been very satisfied with the quality of our Philips Intera MR system, we wanted to move to an Achieva 1.5T. However, our Intera was only 6 years old so we were reluctant to invest in a new scanner already."

The perfect solution: no magnet exchange

Hospital administrators were also reluctant to undertake the major rebuilding project to completely replace the old system. "The estimated 6-week time span of a new install would have had severe financial and clinical consequences for the hospital. "The noise and inconvenience were of great concern. And having only one MRI system, the hospital would not be able to provide any MRI service during reinstallation." recalls Dr. Itoh. "Because we already owned an Intera 1.5T, the Conversion to Achieva was the perfect solution for us. The conversion took only about 3 weeks."

View movie on Conversion to Achieva

Comparison of image quality before conversion and after conversion.

Before conversion Dynamic liver imaging with 2D FFE 7 mm slices.After conversion More detail and
improved fat
suppression in
dynamic liver imaging
with 3D e-THRIVE
2 mm slices.
Before conversion
After conversion
Dynamic liver imaging with 2D FFE 7 mm slices.
More detail and improved fat suppression in dynamic liver imaging with 3D e-THRIVE 2 mm slices.
Before conversion T1W with SPIR fat
5 mm slices.After conversion More homogenous
fat suppression with
SPAIR. Improved
detail with
2 mm slices.
Before conversion
After conversion
T1W with SPIR fat suppression; 5 mm slices.
More homogenous fat suppression with SPAIR. Improved detail with 2 mm slices.
Before conversion 3D MRCP with
respiratory triggering
in 3 minutes.After conversion 3D MRCP with
navigator technique
in 2:20 minutes.
Before conversion
After conversion
3D MRCP with respiratory triggering in 3 minutes.
3D MRCP with navigator technique in 2:20 minutes.

Excellent whole body imaging and DWI

The converted system has the same state-of-the-art imaging performance as a new Achieva 1.5T A-Series with 32-channel platform, including access to all Achieva 1.5T coils, software and hardware options. It also looks exactly like a new Achieva 1.5T.

"After the conversion we were quickly up and running again and immediately noticed the improved performance, especially in imaging of the abdomen," says Dr. Kanagae. "The new 32-channel SENSE Torso/ Cardiac coil gives us a much larger field of view than before, and we can now perform excellent whole body imaging. The clearly better image quality also greatly impressed our referring physicians, who now regularly refer their patients to our hospital for a body MRI exam. In addition, powerful tools such as DWIBS (whole body diffusion weighted imaging) and e-THRIVE (3D T1-weighted fast acquisition with fat suppression for dynamic imaging) are now much faster on our new Achieva 1.5T."

"The improved abdominal imaging also allows us to more easily image organs such as the pancreas for which we tended to use other imaging modalities in the past," recalls Dr. Itoh. "We're also starting to use our new system for breast oncology patients, and looking into using it for prostate imaging."
 After conversion: whole body DWI with
After conversion: whole body DWI with DWIBS

3D contrast studies provide higher spatial and temporal resolution

"The most impressive leap forward is seen in 3D contrast-enhanced series," says Dr. Kanagae. "The images are a lot clearer and we are able to obtain much better temporal resolution as well. Previously when using 3D, temporal resolution tended to be less than in 2D imaging. After the conversion, it is also possible to perform dynamic 3D scanning with thinner slices. Image contrast is better too, which is very helpful in image interpretation."

Increased efficiency

MRI radiographer Mr. Ogawa works with the new Achieva system on a daily basis. "The new system has expanded the range of examinations we can perform, and the speed has increased," he says. "Having more possibilities, we've become more ambitious and added new sequences to our examinations. Still, our patient throughput has increased significantly,"

"Since the conversion we've started using ExamCards, which make planning of scans much easier and greatly smooth workflow. And no matter who performs the scan, we don't have to worry about possible mistakes as could occur previously when using a scan list."
Number of patients per day
Number of patients per day

The best of all worlds

According to Dr. Itoh, this conversion was their best choice for the future. "From the financial standpoint, I found the conversion far more attractive than buying a completely new system. And the performance is exactly as if we had bought a new Achieva 1.5T A-series. What's more, after the conversion, our magnet has another full 10 years' warranty. So taking all things together, I can definitely say that the Conversion to Achieva has given our hospital the best of all worlds."

Before conversion<br>Intera 1.5T After conversion<br>Achieva 1.5T A-Series
Before conversion
Intera 1.5T
After conversion
Achieva 1.5T A-Series

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Jan 14, 2011

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Best Practice
Achieva 1.5T, Intera 1.5T
Release 10, Release 11, Release 2.5, Release 2.6, Release 7, Release 8, Release 9
Explorer / Nova Dual, Gradient, gradients, Master / Nova, Nova, Nova Dual, Omni / Stellar, Power / Pulsar, Pulsar
Abdomen, Body, Breast, DWIBS, e-THRIVE, Liver, MRCP, Oncology, Pelvis, Total Body

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