Variations in PET/MRI operations: Results from an international survey among 39 active sites


Information has been collected from positron emission tomography/magnetic resonance imaging (PET/MRI) operational sites to identify its present and future applications. This may help to focus discussions on common interests of the PET/MRI community. A web-based survey of PET/MRI users was conducted from June to October 2015. The survey was composed of 26 questions related to (A) the PET/MRI center, (B) present utilization and imaging protocols and (C) perspectives on key applications. Responses were collected from 39 international sites that operated PET/MRI for a median of 30 months (range, 2 to 62 months). Most installations were located in public institutions with an academic focus (n = 26, 67%). Systems were primarily operated by Nuclear Medicine Departments (n = 13, 33%), jointly by Nuclear Medicine and Radiology (n = 11, 28%), and Radiology only (n = 10, 26%). PET/MRI operation was equally focused on clinic routine and research (47% vs. 45% of sites respectively). Sites reported a strong focus on oncology (76% of research and 88% of clinical applications). Other applications included neurology (9% clinical, 12% research) and cardiology (3% clinical, 6% research). Perceived superiority over positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) was identified as the strongest driver for clinical adoption. Over half the operators expect PET/MRI to excel in clinical routine within three to five years. Emerging key applications for future PET/MRI use were cardiovascular disease and imaging of inflammation. Read more.

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