MRI Machine

Compare MRI Machine

Since they became widely available in the 1980s, MRI machines have improved healthcare by providing doctors, surgeons and clinicians with advanced body imaging, improving their diagnoses and treatment plans for many diseases. Today, technological advances have made MRI scanning standard practice to help diagnose ailments and diseases.

MRI machines are expensive, and with an increase in the number of manufacturers and components with new technologies, it is important for healthcare administrators and clinicians to research all options before making a purchase.

Top 10 Best Rated MRI Machine

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GE Healthcare is headquartered in the United Kingdom and offers a variety of healthcare products in many categories. Its MRI models can be used for most types of imaging including neuro, breast, spine and cardiovascular.

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Siemens is a leading global healthcare company that works to provide medical imaging and lab diagnostics while also offering consulting and healthcare IT services. It helps providers improve outcomes and reduce costs.

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Based in Twinsburg, Ohio, Hitachi’s healthcare and medical companies provide technologies including medical imaging, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems and performance improvement to clinicians around the world.

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Philips Healthcare makes up 42 percent of Philips’ global sales revenue. It has more than 450 innovative products and services in the healthcare industry aimed at providing better care at lower costs.

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Since developing one of the world's first X-ray machines in 1932, Toshiba has continued to use its technology to make medical advancements such as imaging technology. Today it manufactures patient-friendly MRI systems worldwide.

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Invivo is a business of Royal Philips that focuses on MRI coils, advanced visualization systems and MRI-compatible devices. It has been providing hardware, software and instruments in the medical field for over 20 years.

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IMRIS is an intraoperative imaging company that designs imaging systems for surgeons to use in the operating room. Its MRI machine improves patient outcomes by allowing imaging to be done during surgery.

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Esaote has been a leader in the diagnostic imaging field since 1980. It focuses on the diagnostic needs that matter most to doctors as well as the quality of each diagnosis to better the lives of patients.

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Headquartered in Long Island, New York, Fonar got its start in 1978 and introduced the world’s first commercial MRI machine in 1980. Today it sells MRI scanners worldwide and continues to be a pioneer in diagnostic imaging.

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Magnetica was formed in 2005 and is based in Brisbane, Australia. It manufactures extremity MRI systems and MRI system components. It continuously works to develop new MRI component technology for MRI integrators worldwide.

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Important features of MRI machines

Magnetic strength

An MRI machine’s magnetic strength is measured in Teslas (T). The image quality of an MRI depends largely on the field strength of the magnet. The higher the field strength, the better the image quality. Typically, the lower-strength clinical MRI machines can be as low as 0.2T-1.4T, and the high-field clinical systems range from 1.5T-3.0T.

  • 1.5T MRI: The standard for today's clinical MRI machines is 1.5T. A 1.5T machine is quicker than lower strength scanners and is best used with abdomen and chest scans where patients are asked to hold their breath for multiple MRI sequences.
  • 3.0T MRI: A 3.0T machine has a stronger signal or field strength than a 1.5T, providing extremely clear images and faster scan times. This means the patient is in and out of the machine faster. 3.0T machines are ideal for small bone, breast, musculoskeletal, neurological and vascular imaging. A few drawbacks to these more powerful MRI machines are they tend to be louder, hotter and have a higher likelihood of picking up “flow” artifacts in images.
  • Open MRI field strength: Open MRI machines tend to have a lower magnetic field strength than high-field machines. Although improving, they typically have a Tesla strength of around 0.23.

Sequences

MRI sequences are the number of radio-frequency pulses and gradients that result in a set of images with a distinct appearance. Typically, sequences are divided according to the dominant influence on the appearance of tissues. The most common divisions are T1 weighted, T2 weighted, FLAIR sequences, proton density (PD) weighted and diffusion weighted.

  • T1 weighted: T1 weighted sequences are part of almost all MRI protocols. The dominant signal for different tissues show up in images with different colors and intensities. Fluid appears black with a low intensity. Muscle appears grey with an intermediate intensity. Fat appears white with a high intensity. T1 sequences use a contrast agent that is administered through an IV. Contrasting can help with fat suppression when viewing images.
  • T2 weighted: Like T1 sequences, T2 weighted sequences are part of almost all MRI protocols. The dominant signal for tissues differs slightly from a T1 sequence. Fluid has high intensity and appears white. Muscle has an intermediate intensity and appears gray. Fat has a high intensity and appears white.
  • FLAIR sequence: In most instances detecting a buildup of fluid in tissue is key. FLAIR sequences are used with T1 and T2 sequences to remove the effects of fluid from images. This is most commonly used in taking images of the brain and spine after head injuries.
  • PD weighted: PD weighted sequences are used primarily for brain imaging. Even though FLAIR is steadily replacing PD images, they are valued because they offer great signal distinction between fluid and cartilage, making them widely used for joint imaging in addition to brain imaging.
  • Diffusion weighted: Diffusion weighted images are used to determine how easily water molecules move around inside tissue. They are also used to look at tumors and cell swelling. The dominant signal intensities for diffusion weighted sequences show up on images differently than other sequences. Fluid shows no restriction to diffusion. Soft tissue such as muscle, solid organs and the brain show intermediate diffusion. Fat shows little signal due to the presence of water.

Patient comfort

Patient comfort has recently become an important consideration for MRI machine manufacturers. Some of the original designs are loud and can induce a claustrophobic feeling. State-of-the-art technology has enabled manufacturers to design different types of machines, providing greater comfort no matter the size or age of the patient.

  • Noise reduction: The noise emitted by MRI machines when they go through sequences can be quite loud and jarring. With some scans lasting 30 minutes or more, this can become unnerving for a lot of patients. Manufacturers have developed newer magnet technology that reduces noise significantly.
  • Open scanners: Since the development of standard tube-like MRI machines, companies have developed several wider bore options and open-air scanners. By taking the bore of the standard 60 centimeters to a wider 70 centimeters on traditional machines and developing upright machines where patients can stand and face forward during a scan, clinicians now have multiple options for scanning patients.
  • Scan times: Depending on the area of the body being scanned, a typical MRI can take anywhere from 10-45 minutes. The patient must remain completely still during this time. Manufacturers are continuously working on new technologies and algorithms to shorten scan times without losing accuracy.

Technology

Big-brand manufacturers are constantly developing new technology for their MRI machines, making advanced imaging more streamlined and functional. Cloud-based, multi-user software makes connecting sites and departments easier, while new designs of magnets and coils allow for better functionality during procedures. Technology is always at the forefront of MRI manufacturing.

  • Software: Manufacturers have developed certain software to enhance images, link departments, enable multiple users and help make clinician’s viewing, reading and reporting processes more efficient. Most of this software is upgradeable and comes with multiple applications specific to the type of imaging needed.
  • Hardware: Continuously improving hardware for MRI machines has big effects on image quality and patient comfort. Moving away from the one-size-fits-all coil, the development and implementation of body-part specific RF coils and improved gradient coils have greatly increased image quality in MRI scanners.
  • Multi-contrast images from a single acquisition: GE Healthcare’s MAGiC is a magnetic resonance image compilation software that delivers eight contrasts in one acquisition in a fraction of the time of normal imaging. This provides clinicians with more data than a conventional scan, allowing for image manipulation.

Cost

Costs to consider when purchasing an MRI machine include the size and strength of the magnet, upfront costs, servicing costs, whether the machine is new or refurbished and whether the machine is upgradable. Some scanners will cost more upfront, but ongoing service costs will be lower.

  • New vs. refurbished: Depending on the Tesla strength, a new MRI machine can cost upwards of $3 million for 3.0T. Lower strength scanners tend to be around $1.5 million. As a cheaper option, some companies offer refurbished MRI machines that go through multiple checkpoints and meet industry standards.
  • Upfront/servicing costs: An important comparison to consider when purchasing an MRI machine is the upfront cost versus the ongoing servicing cost. Some machines will have a higher upfront cost but a lower servicing cost. If the machine has readily available parts and an upgradable system, it can last a long time.
  • Additional costs: Keep additional costs in mind such as parts, installation, upgrades and add-ons. A major cost to bear in mind in addition to the MRI machine is the MRI suite. This room that houses the machine provides essential safety features that protect patients and clinicians. Installing the MRI suite with the MRI machine can add a few hundred thousand dollars to the final price.

Main types of MRI machines

Traditional

Traditional MRI machines have the smallest bore (60 centimeters wide) of all MRI machines. The patient lies on a table that is then moved into the bore for imaging. There have been numerous developments since the invention of the traditional style scanner, allowing for a more comfortable experience.

Wide-bore

In response to the small traditional bore MRI machines, wide-bore machines were created to have a 70-centimeter opening while at the same time not sacrificing image quality. This provides a less claustrophobic feeling as well as the ability to accommodate patients of all sizes.

High-field open

High-field open MRI machines have a wider circle or oval shaped layout. This design has more airflow with views of the room where the patient is located. It is often used for larger or claustrophobic patients.

Open upright

Open upright MRI machines allow the patient to be upright, seated or lying on their back during the scan. This flexibility also lets clinicians scan the patient in the position in which they are experiencing the most pain. The open upright MRI is a great option for small children who would otherwise be scared of traditional machines.

Where MRI machines are used

Hospitals

Hospitals use MRI machines as a valuable diagnostic tool. Doctors and surgeons can use MRI scanners to obtain quick, high-resolution images to aid in diagnosing patients. Radiology departments from general and interventional to pediatric and neuroradiology use MRI machines to obtain vital images to determine the best treatment options for patients.

Private practices

Private practice clinics that focus solely on diagnostic imaging such as radiologists use MRI machines daily. Like hospitals, private practices focus on specific types of imaging, such as extremity scanning, and therefore have more than one type of MRI machine on-site.

Company reviews for MRI machines

GE Healthcare

Headquartered in the United Kingdom, GE Healthcare manufactures many different healthcare products. Their MRI machines models come in 60-70 cm, 1.5T and 3.0T and are designed to fit specific needs for many practice areas.

  • Applications: GE Healthcare’s various models of MRI machines are designed to be used with specific applications. Whether you are scanning for neuro, body, breast, cardiovascular, spine or pediatric images, GE Healthcare’s machines can offer visible results despite challenges such as motion and water/fat separation.
  • 1.5T and 3.0T: GE Healthcare’s 1.5T and 3.0T models come in the standard 60-centimeter bore and the larger 70-centimeter bore, respectively. Each model comes with variations of GE’s innovative SIGNA platform or their GEM platform designed to provide high-quality imaging no matter the composition of the patient.
  • SIGNA Works: SIGNA Works is GE’s upgradeable standard platform that comes preloaded on all SIGNA models. It provides imaging solutions that cover a variety of contrasts, 2D and 3D volumetric data, and has motion correction capabilities. The NeuroWorks version provides all the tools needed to complete a clinical exam. You can upgrade to the HyperWorks application for better image quality, higher efficiency and more streamlined workflow as your practice broadens.
  • ViosWorks: ViosWorks provides better cardiac imaging in a fraction of the time of conventional cardiac scans. An eight-minute scan provides 3D cardiac anatomy images showing function and flow with cloud-based, real-time image processing.
  • MAGiC: Magnetic Resonance Image Compilation (MAGiC) is a SIGNA upgrade that generates multiple image contrasts in one MRI scan. This includes T1, T2, Inversion Recovery and PD contrasts. Clinicians can also change the image contrast after the scan is completed and the patient has left.
  • Best for: providers looking for an MRI machine with advanced technology.

Siemens MRI

Siemens offers multiple MRI machines with field strengths from 0.35T to 3.0T. Each system has upgrade capability to keep pace with the continuously changing healthcare field and keep the machine state-of-the-art for its entire lifecycle.

  • Products: Siemens’ MRI machines are part of their MAGNETOM family of systems. Their machines have field strengths from 0.35T to 3.0T. Each system comes with either Siemens' TIM (Total imaging matrix) 4G coil technology or DotGo MRI exam software.
  • Syngo.via software: Syngo.via is an imaging software provided by Siemens. It automatically prepares routine oncology, neurology and cardiovascular cases for reading and provides step-by-step guides tailored to the individual disease. Syngo.via allows for fast, secure image sharing no matter where you are via mobile applications.
  • GOBrain: GOBrain allows for a five-minute push-button brain exam with all relevant contrasts and multiple orientations including T1 weighted GRE, T2 weighted TSE, T2 TSE FLAIR and Diffusion-weighted single-shot. This type of brain scan is more tolerable for patients, and it minimizes motion-related discrepancies and the need for rescans.
  • FREEZEit: Overcoming motion is one of the main challenges for a quality MR image, especially in liver imaging. FREEZEit is an award-winning feature that helps reduce motion in imaging. Two features come with FREEZEit technology: StarVibe and Twist-Vibe. StarVibe eliminates the challenge of having patients hold their breath during imaging. This is especially helpful when imaging pediatric patients. Twist-Vibe offers high-resolution images with full 4D coverage for multi-arterial imaging.
  • Quiet Suite: One of the most common complaints from patients about getting an MRI is the noise of the machines. Siemens has developed Quiet Suite, which includes QuietX sequences during neurological and orthopedic exams. Quiet Suite provides complete, quiet exams with no compromise to image quality.
  • Best for: providers looking for multiple technologies in an MRI machine.

Hitachi MRI

Hitachi has three models of patient-centered MRI machines with field strengths of 1.2T or 1.5T.  With their oval-bore and open design systems, patient comfort is an important factor in the engineering of Hitachi’s machines. They also provide three refurbished MRI systems from Airis and Altaire.

  • Oasis 1.2T: Hitachi's Oasis 1.2T has an open design for maximum patient comfort and includes advanced magnet design and Zenith RF Technology to provide high diagnostic performance. The maximum open design allows for an unobstructed viewing angle and can handle the most challenging patients without compromising safety or performance.
  • Echelon Oval 1.5T: The Echelon Oval was designed around the shape of the human body to accommodate a broad range of patients. This system has all the major features of a 1.5T MRI system, including patient accessibility, workflow and clinical capabilities. At 74 centimeters wide, it includes the widest patient opening of a 1.5T system and comes with Hitachi’s Workflow Integrated Technology (WIT).
  • Echelon 1.5T: The Echelon 1.5T guarantees high uniformity and image quality as well as consistent fat saturation. It can deliver a large, highly uniform imaging volume without forcing patients to maintain uncomfortable positions. Echelon comes with the VERTEX II enhanced Echelon 4.0 software. This software brings processing power that offers multiple clinical capabilities.
  • Refurbished systems: Hitachi offers certified pre-owned MRI systems from AIRIS and Altaire. Each system is carefully inspected, tested and up to original factory specifications. The AIRIS II and AIRIS Elite are 0.3T Permanent Magnet systems, and the Altaire is a 0.7 Superconducting Magnet system.
  • Evolution 5 upgrade: Evolution 5 is a substantial software upgrade for the Oasis system. It includes improved image sharpness and clarity with the integration of a new image processing algorithm and optimized FSE sequence. One interesting feature from the upgrade is better liver imaging. Evolution 5 quantifies and maps iron levels in the liver, providing additional non-invasive diagnostic information. This upgrade is free, and Hitachi provides online training on how to use the upgraded features.
  • Best for: providers needing a high-quality open MRI system or a cheaper refurbished machine.

Philips Healthcare

Along with many other products and services in the healthcare industry, Philips Healthcare provides a family of five MRI systems called Ingenia. They are designed to meet specific imaging needs based on varying patient types and clinical needs.

  • dStream technology: Philips systems come with dStream technology, which digitizes signals to provide high-resolution images at fast speeds and eliminates the noise that usually comes from analog pathways. It also uses fiber-optic routing to allow images to be captured without compression or pre-distortion.
  • ScanWise Implant: Some patients have implants that are not conducive to MRI scans, making it difficult for clinicians to set each implant's safety parameters. Philips developed a software called ScanWise Implant that provides a step-by-step guide on how to enter the condition values of the implant manufacturer. The MRI system will automatically apply the values for the entire exam.
  • Patient empowerment: Philips MRI designs its machines with the patient in mind. Scans can be intimidating for patients, and Philips has helped lessen patient anxiety through visual experience, comforting guidance and reduced noise to help patients hold still and relax. Immersive visual experience allows patients to select a video theme to be viewed while inside the machine, while AutoVoice gently guides patients through breath holds. Finally, gradient noise is significantly reduced with Philips' ComfortTone technology.
  • iPatient: iPatient is a platform for Philips Ingenia systems that allows clinicians to tailor each patient's procedures. From workflow control during patient setup to planning the scan to processing images, iPatient makes it easier to produce quick, tailored, consistent images by automating repetitive tasks depending on patient variability.
  • Xtend magnet system: Ingenia systems with the Xtend 70-centimeter-wide bore provide the largest consistent field of view in a commercial 70-centimeter system. This wider bore is great for spine imaging and large abdominal overview images.
  • Best for: providers looking for a patient-centered design in an MRI machine.

Toshiba Medical

Toshiba Medical manufactures a group of MRI machines called Vantage. They are available in 1.5T or 3.0T and include state-of-the-art technologies to make exams quieter and safer for patients.

  • M-Power: M-Power is Toshiba’s MRI system’s customizable interface. With M-Power, operators can design their own protocols and easily access tools. It boasts an easy-to-learn interface that can have the first scan running with three steps: Register the patient by selecting their preloaded name, click “start” to load the optimized protocol and select “scan start” to begin.
  • Pianissimo: MRI noise is one of the most complained about aspects of getting a scan. Toshiba’s Pianissimo technology significantly reduces machine noise inside and outside, making exams more comfortable for patients. Toshiba’s hardware allows for noise to be reduced during all sequences while most competitors use only software to address noise reduction.
  • Non-contrasting imaging: With increasing awareness of potential risks involving certain contrast agents, Toshiba provides alternative, contrast-free MRI techniques. They provide clinicians with four generations of non-contrast sequences that minimize patient risk while still providing high-quality images.
  • Integrated coils: Toshiba has designed coils to provide maximum patient comfort while still providing high-quality images. Their coils are designed specifically for Toshiba’s MRI models and are specific to the head/neck, shoulder, knee, wrist/hand, cardiac and breast, as well as coils for pediatric use.
  • Scalable technology: Toshiba’s Titan model is designed with upgrading in mind. It comes in a 16 and 32 channel system. The upgraded 32 channel includes more coil elements allowing for faster scans, shorter breath hold times, quicker pediatric protocols and faster cardiac scanning.
  • Ultrashort Echo Time (UET): Obtaining images of the lung has always been problematic because the air inside the lungs causes low density. Toshiba’s UET sequence allows clinicians to view lung tissue with a very short relaxation time.
  • Best for: providers looking for a quiet MRI machine that is designed around what matters most to the patient.

Invivo

Invivo has been producing MRI coils, advanced clinical visualization systems and MRI-compatible devices for over 20 years. They focus on lung, breast, prostate and neurological solutions by providing clinicians with high-quality imaging solutions for better diagnostic accuracy.

  • Breast solutions: Invivo manufactures coils specifically for breast imaging. The coils have comfort padding, open design for positioning and biopsy access and convenient layout of imaging elements. Invivo’s DynaCAD software has been enhanced for breast imaging by providing multi-vendor viewing, a large flexible workspace and custom hanging protocols.
  • Lung solutions: DynaLync from Invivo is a software that integrates patient data management associated with lung cancer screening programs. It automates routine administrative and instinctive tasks and allows for customization to meet clinician needs. DynaCAD Lung software provides efficient viewing, editing and quantification of images as well as various viewing layouts.
  • Neurological solutions: Invivo’s DynaSuite Neuro is designed for optimal workflow and analysis for pediatric and adult patients. Applications in DynaSuite Neuro include perfusion for tumor analysis and stroke, diffusion imaging for stroke and surgical planning and functional MRI for surgical planning.
  • Prostate solutions: DynaCAD for Prostate gives radiologists a wide range of advanced visualization tools for real-time analysis, review and reporting. After images have been taken they can be transferred directly from the MRI machine to DynaCAD for Prostate to develop reports and statistical data.
  • Best for: clinicians who want state-of-the-art imaging solutions software.

IMRIS

IMRIS uses intraoperative solutions to provide surgeons with high-quality imaging in the operating room. Using innovation and design, IMRIS brings the MRI machine to the patient, minimizing patient movement and procedure time.

  • iMRI: Intraoperative MRI (iMRI) systems allow for fast imaging during surgery without moving the patient from the operating room. With iMRI, surgeons have decision support and guidance during the procedure. This can be very beneficial with minimally invasive surgeries such as neurological and spinal procedures.
  • VISIUS Surgical Theater: The VISIUS Surgical Theater by IMRIS uses patented technology to transport iMRI scanners on ceiling-mounted rails from room to room in the surgical theater. This new way of imaging reduces re-operation rates, limits transport and image shift issues and eases concerns of completing a planned procedure. IMRIS offers a two and three room theater designed for image guided and non-image guided neurosurgery. Having one scanner servicing all rooms with intraoperative images, the VISIUS Surgical Theater is a flexible solution for clinicians.
  • Intraoperative coils: IMRIS developed intraoperative coils that work well with the IMRIS Surgical Theater. The two-piece coils are designed for use in an operating room. They have an enhanced signal-to-noise (SNR) ratio and a posterior section that can remain stable during surgery while the anterior section can be moved or removed. This helps when moving a patient from surgery to imaging.
  • VISIUSeye: With the intent of improving workflow during procedures, the VISIUSeye is a tool used to determine if the patient and any attached devices will fit within an imaging system. It assesses the patient while they are on the table and matches them with the opening of the moving MRI machine. The VISIUSeye’s height is adjustable to measure the distance from the floor to the table, and each one matches the profile of the imaging system for accurate measurement.
  • Horseshoe headrest: The horseshoe headrest was developed by IMRIS to allow surgeons to position a patient without using rigid head fixation devices. It fits patients ranging from neonatal to adult sizes and works well with IMRIS’ intraoperative coils.
  • Best for: operating rooms wanting a seamless workflow between advanced imaging and intraoperative procedures.

Esaote

Esaote is a leader in the diagnostic imaging field and concentrates on three areas in healthcare: ultrasound, MRI and healthcare IT. They have three MRI systems that boast high image quality, flexibility, ease-of-use and patient comfort.

  • G-scan Brio: Esaote developed the G-scan Brio MRI system for musculoskeletal imaging. Its open and tilting design provides greater patient comfort while using Esaote’s latest imaging performance and sequences. With its weight-bearing design, the G-scan Brio provides additional diagnostic capabilities. The force of gravity causes biomechanical changes in the body, allowing for real-time MR imaging in a standing position.
  • O-scan: Esaote designed the O-scan system specifically for extremities. It has an open permanent magnet with 0.31T strength and comes with a full set of predefined sequences and protocols with the option of using customized examination protocols. The O-scan has an open patient bed and offers real-time imaging showing the patient's positioning. It uses Windows intuitive interface protocols, which are custom designed for extremity MRI.
  • S-scan: The S-scan covers all diagnostic imaging from feet to shoulders including the L and C-spine. It has an open permanent magnet with field strength of 0.25T. The S-scan features a wide rotating table, allowing for easy patient access and comfortability. Clinicians can customize or use preloaded protocols. Like Esaote’s other two systems, it uses real-time imaging for optimized patient positioning.
  • eXP technology: eXP technology is an option for all Esaote’s MRI machines. It uses sophisticated MRI software techniques and a high-powered workstation to provide faster system response times and improved image quality. In some applications, eXP can provide complete high-resolution joint imaging while maintaining a quick scan time.
  • Neuro imaging: Neuro imaging for the head is an option for the S-scan and the G-scan Brio MRI systems. Technology and features are dependent on each system. Clinicians and healthcare providers can go online for up-to-date details on head imaging options.
  • Best for: clinicians looking for an ergonomic MRI machine with real-time imaging.

Fonar

Fonar has been a pioneer in the diagnostic imaging field for over 25 years. It developed the first Upright MRI scanner and two alternative scanners to the tunnel-type MRI machines commonly used today. Along with these three types of MRI machines, Fonar is working on new technology for an MRI operating room.

  • UPRIGHT MRI: Fonar developed an MRI that allows the patient to sit, stand, bend or lie down during a scan. This allows clinicians to scan patients in the position in which they experience their problems. The UPRIGHT MRI allows the patient to be scanned with the normal weight of their body on their spine and other joints for a more accurate diagnosis. Fonar’s magnet maximizing technology in the UPRIGHT MRI can produce images at 0.6T with the same quality as images with 1.5T.
  • Fonar 360: Addressing one of the biggest patient complaints about getting an MRI scan, the Fonar 360 MRI machine eliminates the tunnel-type, claustrophobic machine. The Fonar 360 is a full-size room with the magnetic poles located in the center protruding from the ceiling and floor. The patient lays down between the two poles in a large gap and is accessible from any angle.
  • Open Sky MRI: Fonar developed the Open Sky MRI with optimum patient comfort in mind. Playing off the Fonar 360’s open design, the Open Sky MRI’s walls, ceilings, floors and magnetic poles can be decorated with various landscape scenes and murals of cartoon characters for children. Along with the multiple décor options, Fonar’s patented Whisper Gradients provide a sense of quietness during the scan. The Open Sky MRI gives clinicians 360 degrees of access to the patient, which benefits MRI-guided surgical procedures.
  • OR 360: Fonar’s work-in-progress is the OR 360. This MRI scanner resembles the 360 machine but is optimized for the operating room. Surgeons have the luxury of seeing high-quality 3D images of the interior of the body during minimally invasive procedures. The OR 360 is a dual-purpose scanner and can be used for both surgical procedures and diagnostics.
  • Best for: clinicians wanting an MRI machine that focuses on the patient’s comfort without losing image quality.

Magnetica

Magnetica focuses on developing magnets and components for compact and extremity MRI scanners. Their compact 1.5T and 3.0T scanners utilize custom gradient coil and radio frequency coil design, making them ideal for body-part specific imaging.

  • Extremity scanners: Magnetica creates compact 1.5T and 3.0T MRI systems for extremity imaging. They use a patented asymmetric technology to compact the superconducting magnets used in their machines as well as custom designed gradient and radio frequency coils. Magnetica extremity scanners weigh significantly less than whole body scanners, coming in at around 1,100 pounds.
  • Radio frequency coils: Magnetica manufactures RF coils for vertical and horizontal bore magnet systems. By matching the RF coils' dimensions with standard gradient coil systems, they are designed to work with all major commercially available MRI scanner platforms.
  • Gradient coils: Magnetica designs and produces gradient coils for its own MRI machines and for customer-specific requirements. Testing throughout the building process, Magnetica can ensure each coil is built to specification. By using dedicated gradient manufacturing equipment, their manufacturing process is precise, efficient and cost-effective.
  • Patents: Currently, Magnetica has 37 patents and five applications pending worldwide. Patents include specially designed coils and different types of magnets for various uses.
  • Best for: clinicians wanting an MRI machine that is specific to extremity imaging.