GUELPH GENERAL HOSPITAL
The much-anticipated new MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) machine was safely delivered at Guelph General Hospital earlier Monday. The 13-tonne magnet replaces a 16-year-old machine that has been used to serve approximately 12,000 patients each year for assessment and diagnosis.
This specialized piece of equipment produces 3D images to help diagnose health issues, detect disease, and monitor treatment. It uses a large magnet and radio waves to produce images of internal organs and structures. The new machine boasts improved image quality which means the team can be confident in delivering an accurate diagnosis.
“The new MRI is equipped with MR-guided breast biopsy which will improve patient care. MR-guided breast biopsy uses a magnetic field, radio waves, and a computer to help locate a breast lump or abnormality. A needle is guided to a tissue sample that is removed and examined under a microscope. It is less invasive than a surgical biopsy, leaves little to no scaring, and can be performed in less than an hour,” shared Dr. Samir Patel, chief of diagnostic imaging.
To accommodate the new machine, renovations in the MRI suite will continue over the next two months, with the first patients to be seen on the new machine expected in late October. Until then, MRI exams will continue to be conducted in a temporary trailer using a temporary MRI as they have since July. Patients are asked to register in diagnostic imaging on the third floor of the hospital before proceeding to the trailer for their exam. Staff and volunteers are available to assist patients as they find their way and signage is in place to provide directions.
“The outpouring of support from our community around the importance of this equipment has been incredible. We are eager to provide additional access for our patients and contribute to a much needed decrease in wait times for MRI services,” shared Gavin Webb, vice-president, finance and chief information officer.
Funding for the MRI was provided by The Foundation of Guelph General Hospital through the Together, We Care campaign.