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Review Article

Pak J Nucl Med. 2013; 3(1): 1-21

Paving the way for modality choice of the future: challenges and expectations of the first simultaneous wholebody PETMRI molecular imaging in the UK

Michael Masoomi, Georgios Ntentas, Lawrence Foulsham.

Following the success of PET-CT in the last decade, there have been high expectations regarding the development of new hybrid imaging modalities such as PET-MRI. After years of development, the first simultaneous, fully integrated, wholebody PET-MRI scanner has been released and first clinical results have been published. PET-MRI offers numerous advantages such as excellent softtissue contrast, significantly lower radiation dose than PET-CT and a wide variety of functional MR imaging combined with PET. However, there are some technical and operational challenges to be addressed. The main objectives of this study were to review the challenges and expectations in the installation, siting, and patient service provision of the Biograph mMR, the first simultaneous wholebody PET-MRI system installed in the UK and to underline the various feasible solutions. The paper incorporates an extensive literature review, several visits to the installation site and productive discussions with associated scientists and Siemens Healthcare (Biograph mMR manufacturer). With regards to room shielding and siting requirements, several unique characteristics were observed as they had to meet the local regulations for both the PET and the MRI components. Local patient service provision requirements were addressed through developing new clinical examination protocols and through additional safety considerations. Further research will be necessary for optimising these procedures and to ensure widespread clinical adoption of the PET-MRI imaging system.

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