January 2017 - Metal Artifact Reduction

As we explained in the last post, if you have a metal object implanted in your body, you most likely will still be able to have an MRI examination. Unfortunately, with most conventional MRI scans, the metal can cause an artifact on the images, making the exam essentially useless. Typically the metal causes a large, black hole on the images, completely obscuring the implant and all tissues surrounding it.

With our new MRI scanner, we have access to the latest software, specifically developed to allow scanning of metal implants with excellent image quality. We can now see the edges of the metal impant and the tissues immediately adjacent to it. This specific sequence is only available on a couple of scanners in Vancouver, and will not be available on the scanner that will be installed in Fort St. John.

The image of the knee on the left is a conventional MRI sequence.  It is impossible to see any of the knee structures due to the metal total knee replacement that the patient has. The image on the right is the same patient using the specialized sequence that we have. Note that you can now see the muscles, bone and other structures of the knee and assess the integrity of the implant and surrounding tissues.

If you have a metal implant in your body, we would automatically utilize this new software to allow us to vastly improve the ability for our radiologists to assess these areas. There is no additional cost to you for us to add this specialized scan to your exam. Note that it may add some additional time to your visit, but we believe it is absolutely worth the time!

The image on the left is a conventional MRI of a patient with an artificial hip. The metal hip causes artifacts around the hip which makes it impossible to see any of the structures nearby. By using our specialized software, we can actually see the outline of the metal hip replacement and be able to assess the health of the bones, muscles and ligaments.

If you have any questions if any implants that you may have in your body can be scanned, or require other information about MRI, please feel free to e-mail us at: mri@peacemri.com and we would be happy to respond. Images credited to GE Healthcare.