Recent advances in MRI technology

Posted on 01/12/2023

What is the future of MRI?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the gold standard of imaging diagnostics in many medical disciples. However, even when it would be the greatest alternative, it is not always easily accessible. Technology advances at a breakneck pace. The next generation of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) could look extremely different.

How MRI technology is utilized now?

Today's MRI s are primarily used to visualize water molecules or protons, and soft tissue imaging has always been a strong suit of the technique. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the gold standard in brain diagnoses. It not only shows tumors, ischemic strokes, and bleedings, but it also gives functional information, such as which parts of the brain are active in various scenarios. Abdominal and pelvic imaging, further down the body, is another region where MRI has outperformed previous technologies in many diagnostic circumstances.

While both CT and MRI scans can detect most pathologies, MRI is usually superior in terms of thorough characterization of pathological lesions. This is why gastroenterologists, oncologists, and urologists who want to see what's going on in the liver, spleen, or prostate gland prefer an MRI versus a CT scan. The heart and blood arteries are other important topics for MRI. The morphology of the ventricular walls and heart valves can be displayed over time in cardiac MRI, and perfusion data and tissue properties can be included. MRI may be used to diagnose and measure myocardial and valve function in high detail, making it a one-stop-shop for identifying heart problems of all kinds.

What is ahead in MRI technology?

The way imaging is organized in healthcare systems around the world may need to be rethought. MRI systems that are less expensive, smaller, easier to use, and less prone to errors could be widely used. Small hospitals, outpatient clinics of various kinds, and orthopedic offices, for example, could benefit from having an MRI unit on-site, either run independently or in collaboration with a radiological service provider (in a hub-and-spoke approach). Radiologists would solely write the reports in this case. They could also function as an active consultant in circumstances that require their experience, tele-operating the system if necessary. Smaller, more mobile, and less powerful MRI scanners may potentially appeal to larger facilities. They might be utilized as overflow capacity – think COVID-19 – but they could also be used to provide entirely new services, such as MRI examinations in the emergency room, during interventions, or in the ICU.

An MRI platform that is less prone to artifacts could pave the way for new therapeutic applications, such as enhanced implant imaging or new lung imaging possibilities. Would there be a cost to MRI going this route? When we talk about smaller MRI platforms with weaker magnets, the available signal-to-noise ratio will inevitably decrease. Rapid advancements in digital post-processing technologies, on the other hand, maybe able to compensate to a great extent. Furthermore, high-end imaging would not be replaced by the new MRI equipment.