CT nuevo de Siemens consigue cabeceo del FDA

por Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | September 19, 2014
Courtesy of Siemens
Siemens Healthcare announced yesterday that its new 16-slice CT scanner-SOMATOM Scope-received FDA approval. With a space requirement of 130.2 square feet, Siemens claims that it's the smallest 16-slice fixed CT system on the market today.

"That gives it a unique opportunity to be placed into places that you normally wouldn't think about putting a CT but would want one in order to provide better patient care," Karol Nguyen, product manager at Siemens, told DOTmed News.

A lot of intensive care units are showing an interest in having their own CT so they don't have to transport a critically ill patient from their ICU room on the top floor to their radiology department. The Scope is small enough to be placed inside of the ICU.
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"This way a critically ill patient, who is often connected to a variety of equipment, doesn't have to be moved six floors down to radiology in order to get the scans they need for the follow-up care," said Nguyen.

Nguyen describes the new system as "very attractively priced" but still on par with the refurbished 16-slice CTs on the market today. Siemens was able to price it that way because it's built on a lot of the existing technology that they put in their high-end systems.

"We've worked very hard to engineer a lot of efficiencies in the machine and that really drives down the cost of ownership of the system," said Nguyen. "It also drives down the R&D that we have to spend on creating a system, as well as on processes that we would be involved in, in the operation of the system."

The Scope has Siemens' Iterative Reconstruction in Image Space (IRIS) technology built into it, which speeds up the image reconstruction and reduces noise and artifacts at the same time. Its Adaptive Signal Boost technology amplifies low signals when there is high attenuation, and the Fully Assisting Scanner Technology (FAST) and Combined Applications to Reduce Exposure (CARE) applications, to help reduce radiation exposure and standardize the CT imaging process.

It also includes Siemens' eCockpit technology, which is a suite of technologies that work by eliminating the wear and tear on the system. The eMode technology optimizes the scan parameters, the eSleep technology puts the system in hibernation mode if it's idling, and the eStart technology warms up the X-ray tubes so there's no harsh jump in temperature.

"By building in this gradual warm up process for the tube, it extends the lifetime of the tube and could possibly lead to less tube replacements in the future," said Nguyen.

Jakub Mochon, director of marketing and operations for CT at Siemens, said that there is a new opportunity in the marketplace for freestanding emergency departments to own new CT systems. Since they have a lower complexity of cases and don't use CT as much, they usually purchase refurbished CTs because they need something less expensive and smaller.

"In many ways we want to respond to this trend in the market for building the most cost effective solutions," said Mochon. "The health care system is changing — not everyone wants to spend money on the biggest and the most expensive equipment."

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