Hitachi packs one-two RSNA punch in MRI

November 23, 1994

Hitachi hopes to causedouble trouble for other MRI vendors at the RSNA meeting by debutingtwo new works-in-progress scanners. One is a mid-field systemoptimized for interventional studies and the other is designedto strengthen Hitachi's position in the

Hitachi hopes to causedouble trouble for other MRI vendors at the RSNA meeting by debutingtwo new works-in-progress scanners. One is a mid-field systemoptimized for interventional studies and the other is designedto strengthen Hitachi's position in the 1.5-tesla segment.

Airis, the interventional scanner, is a 0.3-tesla verticalfield permanent magnet. The magnet's orientation is similar toHitachi's MRP-7000 mid-field scanner, but Hitachi removed thesides of the magnet's gantry to give physicians access to patientswhile they are being scanned, according to Sheldon Schaffer, directorof marketing.

Physicians can reach patients from the front, back and sidesof the magnet, Schaffer said. Airis will support existing clinicalapplications such as fast spin echo, MR angiography and some fastscanning protocols, while enabling the development of interventionalMRI applications.

Hitachi believes that the permanent magnet design used in Airisproduces a more reliable magnetic field at a lower price thanthe resistive technology in competing scanners.

Like other vendors, Hitachi plans to position Airis as a cost-effectivescanner for routine radiological procedures as well as interventionalstudies. Hitachi is working with its clinical partners to developapplications for Airis. The vendor sees the trauma setting asone that would be particularly appropriate for its technology.

In the high-field segment, Hitachi will unveil Stratis, a superconducting1.5-tesla magnet. Stratis is designed as a compact, actively shieldedscanner that offers cost-effective high-field scanning, Schaffersaid. Stratis can be sited in less than 650 square feet of space.Stratis will support advanced scanning protocols, and Hitachiis developing echo-planar imaging capability for the system. Stratiswill replace Hitachi's MRH-1500, which can be upgraded to Stratis.

Hitachi has filed 510(k) applications with the Food and DrugAdministration for Airis and Stratis.