It’s a new year and 2014, for better or for worse, is in the past. In the Chinese Zodiac calendar, 2015 is the year of the Sheep. But in the radiology world, I like to view 2015 as the year of the Functional C-Arm. You can sit back, knock on wood and cross your fingers, but if you really want to make sure your C-Arm continues working all year long there is one simple thing you can do. Preventative Maintenance.
Comparing a C-Arm to a car is a common comparison in this industry and one I try to avoid as much as possible. But in this instance it really does apply. Would you drive your car every day over the course of the year and not bring it in to a service station to change the oil and get a check up? Obviously not. So how can you expect to use your C-Arm daily without the occasional service check?
Here at Atlantis Worldwide we urge our customers to get a Preventative Maintenance (or PM) twice a year. We break it down into the 6-Month and the 12-Month PM.
The 6-Month PM is focused on keeping your system clean and dust free. It is important to clean out the filters on your used C-Arm every 6 months. The fans on both the monitor cart and C-Arm are constantly running when the C-Arm is on and over time can become very dusty. Dust can also start to compile on the inside of the used C-Arm (specifically on the monitor cart). A little dust may seem harmless but it doesn’t take much to make your C-Arm overheat or cause other issues especially if it hasn’t been cleaned in years. During this 6-Month PM the C-Arm will also have a basic check-up to make sure it doesn’t have any other issues.
The 12-Month PM is the more detailed of the two. Normally during the 12-Month PM we replace the batteries on the CPU board in the monitor cart and on the X-Ray Controller in the used C-Arm. These batteries are just like little watch batteries that can drain over the course of a year. They are separate from the main battery pack, but during the 12-Month PM we will do a load test on that battery pack as well. Our engineers will also do a full calibration on the rest of the system, which includes checking the image quality, checking kV, checking dose output and backing up all the data. Additional cleaning will occur as well if necessary.
It is important to have a PM performed twice a year not only to ensure the day-to-day functionality of your C-Arm, but also to extend its lifespan. These PMs are also a very reasonable expense especially if you compare them not only to the potential costs of repairs but also to the loss of profit from your C-Arm being down.
So the ball is in your court. Will this year be the year of the Functional C-Arm. Or will it be the year of, well… The Sheep.
If you would like to schedule a PM or just talk to somebody about your C-Arm, please contact Alex Silbergleit at (212) 366 9100 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Some blogs you may have missed:
- “What is the difference between OEC 9800 C-Arm and OEC 9800 Plus?”
- How Much Does it Cost to Lease a C-Arm?
- OEC 9800 Vascular C-Arm vs. Siemens Avantic C-Arm
- The A, B, C’s of Purchasing C Arms
- Extend The Life of Your Medical Imagining Equipment or Replace It?
Meet the author: Alex Silbergleit