MR images capture birth process

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German physicians and healthcare providers at Charité University Hospital in Berlin recently followed the birth of a child on an open MRI system.

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Image courtesy of Charité University Hospital.
The medical team monitored images of the baby inside the mother and the child's movements in the birth canal to the exit of the head using an open MRI scanner (Panorama HFO, Philips Healthcare, Andover, MA).

The hospital reported that the birth on November 20 was without complications and both mother and baby are doing well. The baby, a boy, weighed 2,585 grams (5.7 lb) and was 47 cm (18.5 inches) in length.

The study was performed as part of a two-year research and development project on open MRI involving a novel fetal monitoring system that allowed the monitoring of the child's heartbeat during the birth process. The researcher team, led by radiologist Ulf Teichgräber, MD, noted that the open design of the scanner provided easy access to mother and child during the study.

The research team plans to explore the birth process and movements of the unborn child and the mother's pelvis to better understand why approximately 15% of pregnant women need a cesarean section due to the baby not moving properly into the birth canal.

Related Reading

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MRI predicts neurodevelopmental outcomes in prematures, August 17, 2006

MRI delineates brain injuries in newborns, May 3, 2006

MRI corresponds with neurodevelopmental outcome in preterms, November 14, 2005

MRI delineates complexity of preterm brain, April 30, 2004

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