Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has opened a new wide-bore magnetic resonance imaging suite, making it the first hospital in Houston to offer the enhanced patient self-selection experience that is unlike traditional full body MRI scanners, according to a news release.
The Siemens Open Bore MAGNETOM Aera 1.5T MRI scanner enables patients to select themes such as aquarium or jungle. The choice initiates a soundscape and changes the color of the suite to correspond with the theme. Patients undergo fewer repeat scans during examination, because the revolutionary technology provides faster more precise results and superior image quality, according to
The wide-bore MRI scanner accommodates more types of patients including the elderly, claustrophobic and obese. Compared to traditional scanners, the imaging device provides more headroom, legroom and elbowroom. It measures 70 centimeters in diameter instead of 60 centimeters, which means there is no need for patient repositioning, and patients of various body sizes can feel relaxed while lying flat on the wide-bore.
The acquisition of the wide-bore MRI scanner exemplifies our commitment to providing innovative healthcare, Beryl Ramsey, CEO of Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital and senior vice president of Houston Methodist, said in the release. We continuously seek ways to advance healthcare and offer the best patient experience on our campus.
Patients receiving traditional MRI scans say they feel confined and closed in. The open field of the wide-bore imaging device allows a patients head to remain outside of the scanner during most treatments, according to the release. Another benefit is a reduction in time to complete some scans. For example, brain scans that typically take 30 minutes are completed in 20 minutes when a contrast dye is not required.
The device operates on a high-field strength magnet, providing faster, more precise results, according to the release The 1.5 tesla performance of the magnet produces superior image quality that is not provided by typical vertical field open magnets, according to the release. The project cost an estimated $3.6 million.