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Always Demand 3T MRI For Your Imaging Needs

WHY 3T MRI?

                  MRI QUALITY COMPARISON GRAPH

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Siker Imaging 3T MRI

MRI Technology has improved tremendously in the recent years, similar to all other computer based technology; smart phones, lap tops, tablets, etc. It is important to do your own research and understand the difference in technology being utilized at different facilities before scheduling your imaging study.

Today, the GOLD STANDARD for MRI is the 3T or 3-Tesla MRI scanner. Stronger, faster, higher quality, better clarity and specialty sequences all equate to a higher level of diagnostic confidence and even earlier detection of pathology.

More commonly used equipment in many centers and hospitals include older, lesser 1.5T and in particular “Open Architecture MRI” systems. 1.5T and Open MRI can no longer provide the high quality and specialty data that is now possible with the more advanced, stronger and sharper 3T MRI equipment (at no additional cost to the patient).  In fact, there are now many specialty sequences and imaging techniques that can be performed at 3T that can’t even be accomplished on the older Open and 1.5 technology.

3T MRI is the absolute strongest, sharpest and BEST technology available to patients for MRI imaging of all varieties.

When an MRI is necessary, make certain you are getting the very best available. Don’t settle for less. Demand 3T MRI for all of your MRI imaging needs.

We have included a summary of the technology below and encourage you to do your own research. 

 

Grading MRI Quality

MRI quality is primarily governed by the American College of Radiology. The ACR sets criteria for standards that must be met for MRI facilities to become accredited.

Unfortunately, they still allow suboptimal equipment that is 20+ years outdated to pass these benchmarks. When it comes to standards in healthcare, Siker Medical believes that the best should be demanded.

Exam quality is primarily determined by the amount of data collected.  The four main components to exam quality in MRI are matrix size, slice thickness, number of slices, and number of different sequences.

Matrix Size: Matrix size refers to the image resolution which directly correlates to more sensitivity to subtle abnormalities and higher image quality.  Increasing the resolution does have a trade-off in a loss of signal.  3 Tesla MRI provides more signal, which facilitates the ability to use a larger matrix, correlating to better resolution.

Slice Thickness: In MRI, anatomy is depicted using thru-plane images. Just as when slicing through a block of cheese, the internal parts can be visualized by cutting the block in to slices.  If a BB is placed in the center of the block, slicing the cheese very thin would increase the chances of detecting the BB.  The same applies to MRI; when imaging in thinner slices, the sequences are more sensitive to detecting subtle pathology.  Reducing the slice thickness does cause a drop in signal, but the increased signal associated with 3 Tesla MRI allows us to use the thinnest slices possible to identify subtle abnormalities.

Number of Slices: The total number of slices in a study is directly related to the amount of information the radiologist has to review. With thick slices and little coverage of anatomy, the study becomes limited, and thus pathology is more likely to be overlooked.  Taking the time to cover anatomy completely and utilizing minimal slice thicknesses is what sets Siker Medical Imaging apart from the rest.

Number of Sequences: MRI makes many different sounds because it is being utilized in many different ways to acquire images.  Using different techniques to examine anatomy provides more insight to the physician.  Although there are standardized protocols for imaging centers to follow, Siker Medical Imaging includes additional sequences to routine protocols to maximize information in every study.  Many of our techniques are not even possible without the use of 3 Tesla MRI, and not utilized or even available for other 3T imaging centers.

Why Siker Imaging 3T MRI?

Technology: At Siker Imaging EVERY MRI is performed on the latest 3T MRI equipment.  It’s all we would ever use.  Anything less (1.5 or Open) is a compromise on image and study quality, interpretation and your health.

Expert Interpretation: Each and every MRI study performed at Siker Imaging is interpreted by expert fellowship trained subspecialty radiologists.  The information produced from high-resolution 3T MRI scans is so tremendous, complex and subtle, that it takes expert subspecialty trained radiologist who are used to the complexities and additional information presented in 3T MRI to interpret the studies to the best advantage of the patient and referring physician alike.

Cost: 3T MRI at Siker Imaging is NOT more expensive than 1.5 or even all Open Architecture facilities. You can get the best quality product for the best price.  And note, similar to other services, 3T MRI in any hospital setting is FAR MORE expensive than Siker Imaging.

Quality Guarantee: We are so confident in our product that we GUARANTEE IT.  The first true example of Pay for Performance in medicine in Oregon.  No other facility or hospital will make that guarantee.  See our Quality Gaurantee for more details.

Read More About MRI Technology

Spatial Resolution: Higher spatial resolution at 3T is the key to better diagnostic accuracy. Small tumors or stenoses, previously undetected, are now identified and can be treated in the earliest stages.  Shorter acquisition times and the 3T Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) enable clinical protocols incorporating the most advanced applications such as Diffusion Tensor imaging or MR spectroscopy.

Signal to Noise Ratio: 3T offers twice the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 1.5T MR scanners.  This increased SNR allows greater spatial resolution and in many cases faster scanning.  This advantage is what gives us the ability to obtain the best possible images.  Utilizing these capabilities to take higher resolution images and use faster acquisition times, we can tailor every exam to get the images you need.

Other 3T Advantages: Other 3T advantages include better T1-based techniques such as Time-of-Flight MRA, more robust T2*-weighted acquisitions, and more robust functional MRI signal.  
Finally, the increased 3T SNR can be traded off for increased speed e.g. acquisitions with integrated Parallel Acquisition Techniques (iPAT – SENSE and SMASH-based techniques). At 3T, iPAT shows the best promise to provide excellent 3T image quality in all body regions prone to susceptibility artifacts.

Summary: With our advanced 3T MRI, superb anatomical imaging of the brain, spine, and neuro-vasculature is now routine. Beyond routine, Siker Imaging employs tools and techniques to take MRI imaging to the next level.  With twice the magnet signal strength available for analysis, we are combining functional imaging, multivoxel spectroscopy, and diffusion-tensor imaging to help delineate and enlighten us with respect to numerous pathologies including, seizure foci, migraines, demyelinating disease, identification of eloquent areas of cortex for surgical planning (neoplasms), etc.

More Information About 3T MRI

Magnetic Field Strength is one of the key dynamics that contributes to production of higher quality images, thinner slice thickness and potentially earlier detection of pathology.

Magnetic field strength is measured in “Tesla” units. A “Tesla” (1T) is equal to 20,000 times the pull of Earth’s magnetic field. Therefore, our 3T MRI scanner is 60,000 times stronger than the pull of Earth’s magnetic field.

Relative to diagnostic imaging machines, the 3T MRI scanner at Siker Medical Imaging has a magnetic field strength ten times more powerful than strength of most Open Architecture MRI scanners in use today, in turn providing much higher quality imaging at the same cost to the patient.

All patients deserve to know that they are being scanned with the best and most advanced technology available. More valuable diagnostic data can be acquired in high field MRI scanners (3Tesla) than older, less powerful Open Architecture MRI scanners at the same cost to the patient. “Unless the patient is physically too obese to fit in a closed bore MRI, a 3T MRI scan is a much better and much more valuable study than any Open Architecture MRI scan.”

Open Architecture MRI scanners rely on a much lower magnetic field strength and lower signal to noise ratio, drastically limiting slice thickness, image quality and resolution capabilities.

Many open scanners still in operation utilize outdated, even antiquated technology. Patients scanned in these types of MRI scanners are not getting the most for their dollar. In fact, many physicians feel it is paramount to malpractice to refer patients to an open architecture, or “low field” scanner if not absolutely necessary (i.e. obesity).

With our advanced 3T MRI, superb anatomical imaging of the brain, spine, and neurovasculature is now routine. Beyond routine, Siker Imaging employs tools and techniques to take MRI imaging to the next level. With twice the magnet signal strength available for analysis, we are combining functional imaging, multivoxel spectroscopy, perfusion and diffusion/tensor imaging to help delineate and enlighten us with respect to numerous pathologies including, seizure foci, migraines, demyelinating disease, and identification of eloquent areas of the (neuro) cortex for surgical planning (neoplasms).

Higher spatial resolution at 3T is the key to better diagnostic accuracy. Small tumors or stenoses, previously undetected, are now identified and can be treated in the earliest stages. Shorter acquisition times and the 3T Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) enable clinical protocols incorporating the most advanced applications such as Diffusion Tensor imaging or MR spectroscopy.

3T offers twice the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 1.5T MR scanners. This increased SNR allows greater spatial resolution and in many cases faster scanning. In addition, MR spectroscopy benefits from increased field strength, better resolution of metabolites, and reduced acquisition time. Other 3T advantages include better T1-based techniques such as Time-of-Flight MRA, more robust T2*-weighted acquisitions, and more robust functional MRI signal.

Finally, the increased 3T SNR can be traded off for increased speed e.g. acquisitions with integrated Parallel Acquisition Techniques (iPAT – SENSE and SMASH-based techniques). In fact, iPAT enables a reduction of examination time or an increase in spatial resolution and improves image quality for single shot techniques – all at a cost of reduced SNR. At 3T, iPAT shows the best promise to provide excellent 3T image quality in all body regions prone to susceptibility artifacts.

With our advanced 3T MRI, superb anatomical imaging of the brain, spine, and neuro-vasculature is now routine. Beyond routine, Siker Imaging employs tools and techniques to take MRI imaging to the next level. With twice the magnet signal strength available for analysis, we are combining functional imaging, multivoxel spectroscopy, perfusion and diffusion-tensor imaging to help delineate and enlighten us with respect to numerous pathologies including, seizure foci, migraines, demyelinating disease, identification of eloquent areas of cortex for surgical planning (neoplasms), etc.