AIUM: FDA should investigate star's US purchase

The American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM) has criticized movie actor Tom Cruise's recent purchase of an ultrasound machine for his home as "inappropriate" and a violation of federal regulations.

AIUM condemned the purchase after national news reports said Cruise told television interviewer Barbara Walters that he had purchased the machine for his pregnant fiancée, actress Katie Holmes.

"The AIUM calls on the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) to investigate the purchase of this machine to determine whether it was directly from a manufacturer of ultrasound equipment or through some other source," said the medical association in a press release this week.

"Because the sale of regulated medical equipment to consumers violates FDA regulations, the AIUM also urges the FDA to take appropriate action against the source of this ultrasound machine," the group continued.

The AIUM also reiterated its earlier stands on the prudent use of ultrasound during pregnancy and its opposition to "keepsake" fetal ultrasounds taken in nonmedical facilities. The FDA has warned against use of ultrasound for entertainment purposes as an unapproved use of a medical device since 1994, the group noted.

"While diagnostic ultrasound has never been shown to have any adverse fetal effects, the use of ultrasound at home by untrained individuals and for nonmedical purposes exposes Mr. Cruise's and Ms. Holmes' baby to unnecessary ultrasound energy," said Yale University's Dr. Joshua Copel, the AIUM president-elect, in the press release.

By Tracie L. Thompson staff writer
November 29, 2005

Related Reading

AMA says ultrasound in-utero "portraits" are bad idea, June 22, 2005

AIUM restates opposition to nonmedical ultrasound use, April 7, 2004

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