safety in the MRI suite

September 12, 2009

The MRI projectile accidents reported increased by 277% since 2004 (http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfMAUDE/search.CFM ).

The arising question is whether there should be devices for ferromagnetic detection to avoid those accidents. This could certainly help, but quite often those projectile accidents are the consequence of human failure to comply with the safety requirements, which means people working ‘around’ the MRI scanner should be trained with extra emphasis on safety issues: http://www.patiencys.com/mri-safety/

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2 Responses to “safety in the MRI suite”

  1. Tobias Gilk Says:

    Increased training and responsibility for the MRI staff would be the single most effective step, though in the U.S. it now legally appears that a provider is in a more defensible legal position if they (a) don’t provide training and (b) don’t have effective clinical oversight of the MRI environment (see http://mrimetaldetector.com/blog/2009/08/colombini-case-lawsuit-machinations/).

    I can’t tell you how many MR technologists / radiographers, while feeling great pangs of sympathy for the techs who are defendants in this lawsuit, are profoundly upset that the judge in this case has ‘dumbed-down’ the the expectations of these most critical professionals.

    Irrespective of this one legal case, since MR hazards are invisible and imperceptible (until it’s too late, at least), I firmly believe that it is necessary to have multiple layers of effective protection such that one lapse (or bathroom break) leaves the door wide open to an accident.

    Greater training in safety? Absolutely!

    Is that, alone, an appropriately scaled response to the nature of the hazard? No, it is not.

  2. Tobias Gilk Says:

    oops… I should double-check before hitting ‘submit.’ it should read:

    “…that one lapse (or bathroom break) doesn’t leave the door wide open to an accident.”


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