FDA clears first neonatal magnetic resonance imaging device
MedDev News (FDA). Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration cleared the first magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) device specifically for neonatal brain and head imaging in neonatal intensive care units (NICU).
“Although we can use traditional MRI scanners to image neonates, taking babies outside of the neonatal intensive care unit to MRI suites presents great challenges,” said Vasum Peiris, M.D., M.P.H., chief medical officer for pediatrics and special populations at FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “Having a system in the neonatal intensive care enables safer imaging for this vulnerable patient population.”
An MRI is a medical imaging procedure that records images of the internal structures of the body. MRI scanners use strong magnetic fields and radio waves (radiofrequency energy) to generate the images. The signal comes mainly from the protons in fat and water molecules in the body. When interpreted by a trained physician, images from an MRI provide information that may be useful in determining a diagnosis.
The Embrace Neonatal MRI System is designed specifically for imaging of the neonatal head. The Embrace Neonatal MRI System may be used on neonates with a head circumference up to 38 centimeters and weight between 1 and 4.5 kilograms. The system has a temperature-controlled incubator placed directly into the MRI system, minimizing movement of the baby. If urgent access to the baby is necessary during the imaging process, the baby can typically be removed from the system in less than 30 seconds.