A new imaging technology the size and cost of an ultrasound scanner but as accurate as MRI and CT scans is currently in commercial development.
The Pulsar 1, developed by former University of Oxford research team Sonosine, uses Electro-Magnetic Acoustic (EMA) technology and aims to change the face of medical imaging solutions.
EMA technology uses a mix of RF electromagnetic waves and ultrasound to scan for particular tissue types and create high-quality reliable images that can help diagnostic decisions be made quicker.
The primary issue with both Magnetic Resource Imaging (MRI) and Computed Tomography (CT) scans is that because of the sheer power needed to make these scans they are only available in large scale clinics and hospitals.
This has meant that people who live in remote areas away from medical infrastructure can make effective diagnostic procedures prohibitively expensive. This is the primary problem that the EMA scanner intends to fix.
EMA is the same size as an ultrasound scanner and works by shaking small tissue volumes and detecting their movement. This is similar to ultrasound, but the additional RF signal allows for different tissue types to be detected.
Much like ultrasound machines, it is more portable and mobile than a typical MRI scanner and is significantly less expensive. This in turn could have a major impact on diagnostic procedures and ensures that long term conditions are found earlier than before.
The first product with this technology is known as the Pulsar 1 and is designed to be used in orthopaedic treatment, as well as trauma and sports medicine.