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About Sickkids
About SickKids

May 31, 2017

SickKids receives a special delivery – a new iMRI machine!

The loading dock was a busy place this weekend, as SickKids received a special delivery all the way from Germany. In a very complex procedure that lasted almost 12 hours, a state-of-the-art 3T intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging (iMRI) machine was delivered to SickKids and lifted into the new IGT suite on the second floor of the hospital.

Due to the size of the magnet, a crane was needed to lift the machine into the building. The complexity of the procedure was heightened due to the fact that the magnet was surrounded by liquid helium. This keeps the magnet cool throughout the moving process, but requires that the magnet be kept as level as possible.

The addition of an iMRI scanner will make minimally invasive procedures more effective and available to a wider range of patients at SicKKids. iMRI is used in minimally invasive laser ablation therapy, which is used for epilepsy and tumour removal surgery.

Currently, an average of 120 tumour cases and 40 epilepsy cases are performed at SickKids every year. iMRI will significantly improve the outcomes for these children as it ensures the completeness of tumour removal, results in a shortened length of stay and a decrease in repeat resection rates. Using MRI technology, an increasing number of innovative and minimally invasive procedures, such as High Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) will be performed at SickKids. HIFU uses MRI to determine the exact location of tumours and help target ultrasound waves to burn the whole tumour.  

iMRI will also improve guidance in many procedures involving brain, bone and soft tissue including muscle, liver and kidney biopsies of lesions only identified with MRI imaging.

MRI, which uses a magnetic field and radio waves to produce energy signals that are converted to detailed images of organs and tissues, has many advantages over other image guidance technologies. Since it can be applied to the whole body, MRI can cover a wider range of body parts than other modalities, and can produce images in multiple planes and projections without the use of radiation.

Check out photos from the iMRI move below:

Photo of magnet being lifted off truck.

The magnet was lifted by a crane off the truck and onto a flatbed.

Photo of magnet being prepared for lifting on flatbed.

The magnet was readied for liftoff on the flatbed.

Photo of magnet being lifted by the crane.     Photo of magnet going into second floor of the hospital.

The magnet was lifted by a crane to the second floor of the hospital. A hole was created in the wall big enough to attach the flatbed to the building, and move the magnet off the crane flatbed and into the hallway.  

Photo of iMRI being moved off crane flatbed into hallway.     Photo of magnet in IGT suite.

Tracks were installed on the flatbed so that the magnet could be easily pushed off the crane and into the hallway of the IGT suite.