For as long as human’s have practiced medicine, surgical procedures have almost always required the cutting, moving or removing of a patient’s tissue. At it’s core surgery will always be an invasive procedure, but as technology and surgical techniques improve, invasiveness has been minimalized and healing times have decreased. The problem is that the need to physically open the human body in some way has mostly remained.
But what if there were another way?
What if there was a way to not only look inside the human body’s most complex anatomy using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), but also remove tumors and fibroids, treat disease and alleviate pain without and without a single incision?
What if I told you these treatments are already happening?
The Future of Surgery
For decades, these procedures were considered impossible. Today, Magnetic Resonance-guided Focused Ultrasound Surgery (MRgFUS) technologies developed by the company INSIGHTEC have emerged as a viable alternative to invasive procedures in neurology, oncology and gynecology.
FDA Approved in October of 2012, MRgFUS technology is used for the non-invasive surgical removal of certain types of tissue. That means that tumors can be removed without radiation treatments that produce countless side effects and with no risk of infection or blood loss. In addition, the risk of damage to nearby tissue is also minimized.
Currently being used across the world in applications ranging from neurosurgery to oncology and gynecology, as well as the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease, innovative FRgFUS procedures are being embraced around the world in medical facilities and by doctors for both their clinical and economic values.
So How Does it Work?
The MRI-guided system uses multi high-power phased array transducers that enable precise focal targeting of tissue or bone. The FRgFUS system is integrated into a standard MRI system using a detachable treatment table and ultrasound apparatus. Using real time MRI for targeting and thermal feedback for accuracy, the focused ultrasound beam heats and destroys the target bone or tissue, using high frequency, high-energy sound waves.
The Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and thermal mapping system not only allows the planning of the treatment with real time temperature and anatomical monitoring but also helps doctors protect surrounding tissue, nerves and bone from damage during the procedure.
While the system can be used to treat a variety of patients there are limits. Patients who cannot use a closed bore MRI machine for reasons such as implanted metal devices or size limitations are ineligible. Additionally pregnant women, patients with extensive scarring in the tissue near the treatment area, and patients whose clinicians are unable to avoid important structures (such as a skin fold or irregularity; bowel, other bone, surgical clips, or any hard implants) in the path of the ultrasound beam are ineligible.
Focused Ultrasound and Parkinson’s
The focused ultrasound has been found to be highly successful in helping treat patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease. One of the most common surgical interventions used to treat patients with Parkinson’s is called lesioning. During this procedure a small volume of tissue that is interfering with the patient’s motor functions within the brain is destroyed. Before focused ultrasound, surgeons would have to physically inject ionizing radiation in to the brain or use radio-frequency ablation with a needle inserted through a hole in the skull.
Focused ultrasound has created a completely non-invasive way to perform this lesioning procedure without exposing the patient to radiation or creating a physical hole in the skull. Using this modality in conjunction with image guidance, doctors can focus acoustic energy directly through a patient’s scalp, skull and brain, destroying the target tissue without damaging any of the surrounding tissue, which the beam passes through.
The Continued Importance of Medical Imaging
Whether it’s technologies like Magnetic Resonance-guided Focused Ultrasound Surgery (MRgFUS) or something being dreamed up by doctors, physicists and engineers, the common unifier for the future of medicine is clear and accurate medical imaging. The importance of medical imaging cannot be understated. Today and for the long-term future – it is the first step in helping patients get the treatment they need and delivering positive results.
At Atlantis Worldwide we are committed to providing the best equipment and service in medical imaging. From MRI and C-Arms, to CT-Scanners, X-Ray and PET/CT/Nuclear Machines we are proud to provide best in class equipment and service to hospitals, clinics and doctors around the world.
With such an important role in today’s medical world, as well as in the future of medicine, we urge you to make sure you’re getting the best in medical imaging.
Please Contact Us Today!
Some blogs you may have missed:
- Benefits of Buying Pre-Owned Medical Equipment from a Stocking Dealer
- How Does an MRI Work?
- Extend The Life of Your Medical Imagining Equipment or Replace It?
- Comparing C-Arms: The Ultimate Guide
- 13 Ways to Decontaminate Medical Imaging Equipment & Protect Staff
- Interesting Medical Imaging Articles
Meet the author: Vikki Harmonay