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Fonar bags patent for breast MRI

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MRI vendor Fonar of Melville, NY, has received a patent for MRIbreast scanning of multiple patients, the company reported thismonth. The technique could be used with Fonar's new Quad seriesof MRI magnets, which are open on all four sides and can be

MRI vendor Fonar of Melville, NY, has received a patent for MRIbreast scanning of multiple patients, the company reported thismonth. The technique could be used with Fonar's new Quad seriesof MRI magnets, which are open on all four sides and can be fittedwith up to four patient beds, with a screen between the patientsas they are shuttled through the magnet.

Fonar hopes that the multiple-bed configuration will increasethe throughput and reduce the cost of breast MRI scanning enoughto make it competitive with conventional x-ray mammography. Theconfiguration allows as many as 10 patients to be scanned in anhour, according to Fonar.

Fonar has aggressively defended other MRI patents against whatit claims are infringements by other vendors. It has settled claimsagainst Hitachi and Philips and is involved in litigation withGE, Siemens, and Toshiba.

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