by Loren Bonner
, DOTmed News Online Editor | April 23, 2014
Siemens Healthcare announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared its SOMATOM Force CT System.
The company is marketing the system for challenging cases — specifically for children, patients with renal insufficiency, and those who are unable to hold their breath.
The SOMATOM is able to freeze motion via a versatile scanning mode that can perform an exam in roughly one second, according to Siemens.
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Like several new CT scanners on the market today, the SOMATOM reduces the amount of radiation to a broad array of patients. Siemens said this is achieved through the power reserves of the scanner's Vectron tube.
"The massively enhanced tube power of the SOMATOM Force enables imaging that can be acquired at very low kV settings — and thus at a lower level of radiation dose — routinely in adult patients and even those of a larger body type. In the past, these low kV settings would have resulted in noisy, nondiagnostic studies," said Dr. Joseph Schoepf, director of CT research and development and professor of radiology and cardiology at Medical University of South Carolina.
Due to its low kV imaging, the SOMATOM broadens CT's application for patients with renal insufficiency.
In addition, Siemens said the new CT scanner could help with preventive health care through low-dose lung and colon imaging.
"Low-dose imaging is attributable to two spectral filters, known as Selective Photon Shields, that optimize the X-ray spectrum to significantly improve air/soft-tissue contrast. Patients who are diagnosed with lung or colon cancer are likely to undergo additional follow-up imaging studies that can now be delivered at a continually low dose to enable more decisive treatment and post-therapy evaluations," said a statement from Siemens.