Tuesday, February 18, 2003

The Wall Street Journal has an article today about the deficiencies in some MRI scans. A physical therapist injured her hip, but the MRI was negative. After some additional time, she had an enhanced MRI (a better machine, not dye) that showed a cartilage tear. A physician had neck pain and his MRI was negative. He realized he didn't have pain lying down, including while he was in the MRI tube. He had a standing MRI that showed a herniated cervical disc. The article explained that the open and standing MRI machines have much less power, and therefore less clarity. The strength of machines is measured in "Teslas." The best machines currently are 1.5 Teslas, open and standing machines are 0.5 or 0.6 Teslas, and some manufacturers are introducing 3 Tesla machines.

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