AECC to purchase new Open Upright MRI scanner

After two years of careful deliberation and Board of Governors’ approval, the College has completed negotiations and formally ordered a brand new open and upright magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner to be housed in a purpose built one-story extension to the clinic building. The scanner is a Paramed 0.5T open magnet, which will allow scans to be obtained both standing up and lying down. Owing to this scanner’s advanced computing systems, it will be able to obtain MRI sequences capable of displaying all of the major musculoskeletal pathologies. It will also enable referrers to investigate, for example, the effect of weight bearing postures on such pathologies as disc protrusions and spinal stenosis.

 The scanner will be operated by a specialist MRI radiographer and scans will be available on referral from registered health professionals, both NHS and private. They will be read and reported by consultant radiologists. Special scans may also be carried out for local research groups and collaborators in AECC’s research programmes. MRI and Objective Spinal Motion Imaging Assessment (OSMIA) may also be linked to provide objective diagnostic information about spine instability and its soft tissue effects.
Professor Alan Breen, who led the Procurement Group said: “This technology puts AECC and chiropractic in the UK firmly in the advanced spine diagnostics arena. This scanner will be a focus for service to patients and the community, enhanced education for students, CPD for graduates, and research opportunities for academics. It will be the only open, upright scanner in the South Coast of England and its purchase is very timely. Thank you to all who were involved in the considerable amount of research and planning that led to this moment.”
AECC Principal Haymo Thiel commented: “I am delighted to confirm the purchase of an open, upright MRI scanner. This scanner is very unique as it will be one of only five in the country and it provides an alternative to the traditional tunnel experience; which is challenging for many patients and can be restrictive for MSK clinicians. Furthermore, our students will benefit from the additional and unique learning opportunities that the MRI scanner will present. Finally, we will be providing a needed clinical service to the healthcare community and patients in the South Coast of England, offering an imaging service for patients who suffer from claustrophobia or anxiety, are bariatric or who need a weight-bearing scan. This is an exciting time for the AECC.”