Intraoperative MRI | Miami Neuroscience Institute
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Intraoperative MRI

Miami Neuroscience Institute is the first and only facility in Miami-Dade to acquire Intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging, or iMRI, for use during brain surgery. iMRI is a specially designed MRI for use in a specially designed operating suite. 

What is iMRI?
iMRI, the most advanced imaging technology in the world, allows neurosurgeons to take real-time images of the patient’s brain in the operating room during surgery. These high-resolution images show the surgeons what they have accomplished so far in the operation and whether there is more tumor that can be safely removed. The images show detailed views of the abnormal and healthy tissues of the brain, which can’t always be distinguished with the eye alone, or are hidden from view. 

How does it work?
The iMRI unit is suspended from the ceiling on rails. After the doctors have followed their initial surgical plan and are ready for a real-time update, the iMRI is rolled into place, around the patient, without moving the patient at all. After the images are taken, the iMRI unit is rolled away from the patient. If the images show remaining tumor tissue that’s accessible, neurosurgeons can resume the operation, removing the entire brain tumor, or as much as possible, in a single operation.

What are the benefits of iMRI?
Precision and safety: iMRI makes brain surgery more precise and safe. This visual tool enhances in several ways the neurosurgeon’s ability to perform highly complex procedures in the most effective manner. During surgery, the brain’s soft tissue may shift, making real-time images in the middle of the operation especially helpful. The images also help neurosurgeons protect the “eloquent” areas of the brain—which control speech, movement and the senses—when a tumor is located in a particularly vulnerable region. 

Fewer complications and repeat surgeries: Using iMRI minimizes the risk of complications, such as neurological damage, and maximizes the effectiveness of the procedure. Removing as much of the unhealthy tissue as possible during the first surgery decreases the need for brain tumor patients to undergo additional operations.