DOI: 10.1161/str.55.suppl_1.tp109 ISSN: 0039-2499

Abstract TP109: Quality Improvement Review and Practical Consideration of Hyperfine Portable Bedside Low-Field Magnetic Resonance Imaging in the Non-ICU Setting

Jorge L Morales, Shahid M Nimjee, Cassandra Forrest, Mohammad Shujaat, James Shay, Vivien H Lee
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Neurology (clinical)

Introduction: The Hyperfine portable low-field Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner (0.064 Tesla) was FDA approved in 2020. The use of portable low-field MRI (pMRI) has been best studied in ICU settings, although there has been interest in expanding this technology in floor level status stroke patients.

Methods: We report our experience launching pMRI in our academic comprehensive stroke program in the non-ICU setting. From September 2021 to March 2022, 24 pMRI scans were performed (2 volunteers, 22 floor-status stroke patients). Our institutional pMRI protocol includes localizer, DWI, ADC, and FLAIR (24 minutes scan time). Good head position (GHP) was defined as the vertex of the head abutting the top of the helmet insert. Complete scans were defined as including all sequences and Partial scan included DWI/ADC.

Results: Among 24 scans, most 17/24 (70.8%) were Complete and 2 scans were aborted after only localizer images. Six scans were Partial, due to patient discomfort in 4 (“feeling hot” [2], neck/back pain [2]), and technical issues with machine in 2. Among 22 scans that were Partial or Complete, 6 scans had poor head positioning. We noted that although there was initial GHP, the head could shift out due to gravity or patient self-adjustment due to discomfort. To combat the shift issue, the bed was placed in slight reverse Trendelenburg. We also implemented wedge padding for the lower back that improved comfort. After scan # 11, re-training was performed to include GHP updates. Before re-training, 6/11 (45.5%) had GHP, and afterwards, 11/11 (100%) had GHP. Our quality review also noted that artifact on the DWI/ADC mimicking restricted diffusion could be seen in the internal capsule and corpus callosum, and clinical teams were educated on this.

Conclusions: The use of low-field pMRI in non-ICU settings is feasible. Our institutional QI experience suggests that patient selection and technical skill in GHP is a consideration. After adjusting our protocol, the rate of GHP increased from 45% to 100%. Clinical teams also need to be aware of artifact mimicking restricted diffusion in areas of tightly bound white matter tracks. Further studies are warranted to better maximize pMRI and understand the logistical barriers to successful implementation.

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