The NEONA MRI was designed from the onset to address very special needs including the Neonates that reside in the neonatal intensive-care unit (NICU) of large Medical Facilities. The design plan involved addressing two major problem areas that are particularly unique for this segment of critically ill infants.
The first issue required a compact design for the MRI system that would permit its location within or very near the NICU area. This co-location concept for patients and equipment minimizes patient transport issues and affords lower risk access to the MR technology.
The other issue involves the use of an MR compatible Neonatal Incubator during the actual MRI exam. The MR-compatible incubator serves the purpose of monitoring and stabilizing the patient’s physiological and environmental needs as well as including the MR Coil components themselves. The incubator design requirements – both structural and functional are quite specific and are best addressed by incorporating the Incubator as an integrated sub-system of the MRI system itself.
Collectively – the broad scope of unique features of the NEONA MRI differentiates it significantly from other traditional general purpose MRI systems. We believe this additional investment of design effort addresses more Neonate categories and will better serve as the development platform for further advances in the near and long term. Only in this manner can we expect to advance and improve MRI utility with this unique patient population.