lundi 17 août 2009

Optoacoutics: communicate despite MRI noise

Rooms with magnetic resonance instrument (MRI) scanners are noisy places due to loud whistling and thumping by the magnetic and electronic equipment. An Israeli company, Optoacoutics, has developed an optimal communcations system that cancels noise in the MRI room, making it possible for doctors, nurses, technicians and patients to converse normally and minimizing the chance of medical errors. The Tel Aviv company, whose CEO is Dr. Yuvi Kahana, has sold its IMROC (interventional MR optical communications) system at the the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, one of the world's leading oncology centers.

The IMROC system, claimed to be unique, uses optical headphones and optical microphones that support up to eight concurrent dialogues, eliminating MRI noise and providing previously unheard voice quality. The system has a highly directional fiber-optic microphone integrated with patented, fiber-optic headphones, an optics-based switching unit worn by staffers in the scanning room and a six-channel mixing console. Dr. Kamran Ahrar, the lead interventional radiologist at the Texas hospital, said that since the IMROC technology was installed, MRI rooms have become much more efficient as staffers are able to understand each other. For its various interventions, the MRI room staff use up to five IMROC headsets to communicate.

The new system is now being installed at three additional leading MRI facilities in the US. One hopes the money will be found so that Israeli hospitals can purchase it too.
Source: article by Judy Siegel-Itzkovich @ JPost

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