Conventional scanners can generate noise at the same decibel levels as a rock concert.
At Radiological Society of North America 2012, GE Healthcare has introduced the Silent Scan, a revolutionary technology designed to address one of the most significant impediments to patient comfort – excessive acoustic noise generated during an MR scan. Conventional MR scanners can generate noise in excess of 110dBA (decibels) levels, roughly equivalent to rock concerts, and require ear protection. GE’s exclusive Silent Scan technology is designed to reduce MR scanner noise to near ambient (background) sound levels and thus can improve a patient’s MR exam experience.
“Silent Scan is a huge breakthrough for the MR industry and for patients around the world,” says Richard Hausmann, president and CEO, GE Healthcare MR. “Excessive acoustic noise is a major cause of patient discomfort during MR scans and GE is addressing that with Silent Scan, a new MR advanced application and a major innovation in the healthcare industry. GE is very serious about Humanizing MR and making its MR systems patient-friendly, safe, and without compromise.”
Historically, acoustic noise mitigation techniques have focused on insulating components and muffling sound as opposed to treating the noise at the source. With Silent Scan, acoustic noise is essentially eliminated by employing a new advanced 3D acquisition and reconstruction technique called Silenz, in combination with GE Healthcare’s proprietary design of the high-fidelity MR gradient and RF system electronics. Silent Scan is designed to eliminate the noise at its source; with Silent Scan, patients will experience a more relaxing scanning environment.
Silent Scan is one way in which GE MR is Humanizing MR and putting patients first. GE’s MR systems deliver superb image quality and an optimized patient experience, balancing caring design with insightful technology. Another example of this on display at RSNA is the Optima MR430s 1.5T extremity scanner, which allows patients to undergo an MR exam while sitting in a chair, with Image Quality equivalent to a traditional whole body MR system.
Silent Scan is 510(k) pending at U.S. FDA and not available for sale.