Look: First AI-powered MRI machine with high-quality imaging introduced in Sharjah

Posted on 21-04-2022

The equipment can help identify cancers and determine the severity of strokes

NMC Royal Hospital has introduced Sharjah’s first AI-driven state-of-the-art MRI scanner, the healthcare group said.

With high-resolution images and quicker results, the MRI machine will be helpful in identifying cancers and severity of stroke apart from diagnosing heart, lung, liver and bone diseases.

“This is what investment into our communities looks like. This new state-of-the-art MRI machine is the only one of its type in the northern emirates and only one of four in the UAE,” said NMC Healthcare’s CEO Michael Davis.

“This technology will make it easier for patients in Sharjah and the northern emirates to get high-quality scans close to home with much faster results. Ensuring that everyone has access to high-quality medical imaging is essential to getting people the care they need when they need it,” Davis noted.

MRI is a powerful medical tool that provides detailed images of everything from bones and joints to the brain and spinal cord.

Dr Manjiri Bapat, head of the radiology department at NMC Royal Hospital, noted that it is through MRI testing that the presence or absence of disease or conditions is confirmed.

“It is through MRI testing that the severity of strokes is determined, breast cancer is often found, and it is through a cervical MRI that it is determined if a patient had early-stage prostate cancer. The MRI scan can detect prostate cancer without the use of any additional probes, making the experience much more comfortable, approachable and easier for our patients,” Dr Bapat said.

The new AI-driven Siemens Magnetom Vida 3Tesla MRI scanner with advanced technology, is designed for patient comfort and satisfaction. It has a bigger bore size, which is comfortable for patients suffering from claustrophobia and the AI aids in improving scanning speed while the ambience inside the bore can be adjusted to suit patients' comfort.

The hospital claims that the technology uses a lower magnetic field to open new possibilities for imaging the lungs and patients with implanted devices and will potentially support new interventional procedures that could result in less radiation exposure.

“This is an important advancement for patients with cystic fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension, heart failure, Covid-19 and any other disease where we’re trying to understand the source of shortness of breath and evaluate both the heart and lungs,” Dr Ahmed ElMansoury, consultant pulmonologist at hospital, said.

“The air in the lungs cancels out the MRI signal at higher field strength. However, at a lower field, there’s potential to see lung tissue more clearly with the MRI.”