Emergence of hybrid PET-MRI: first clinical experience
Concerns: What can be done about the lack of young radiologists in Europe?
Prof. Osman Ratib, Head of the Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, University Hospital; Geneva/CH
Whole-body hybrid PET-MR scanners are emerging on the market and are expected to have a significant impact in diagnostic imaging particularly in oncology applications and also in other clinical domains, such as cardiology, inflammatory and infectious disease, as well as in neurological applications.
A whole-body hybrid PET-MR imaging unit was implemented at the University Hospital of Geneva and tested against PET-CT imaging for diagnostic and follow up of oncology patients. The whole-body PET-MR scanner, consisting of a 3-T MR and a time-of-flight PET scanner sharing a single bed allowing sequential acquisition of co-registered MR and PET images, was evaluated clinically in patients referred for diagnostic PET-CT study. PET-MR images were acquired following standard clinical PET-MR studies. Oncological studies included lymphomas, head and neck tumours, prostate and breast tumours as well as lung and colon cancers.
Optimised imaging protocols combining whole body MR attenuation correction data set with standard MR diagnostic protocols of both modalities while reducing the total time of the study were developed.
The diagnostic quality of fused PET-MR images was comparable to corresponding PET-CT images and measured local SUV were comparable. Advantages and limitations of this new technique compared to results obtained from conventional PET-CT technique will be reported.