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MRI Reveals Live Birth from Inside the Body

29 July, 2012 | imaging equipment, medical equipment, MRI, News

Our understanding of the birthing process and the Medical Equipment associated with giving birth have advanced tremendously over modern medical history however dangerous complications can still arise placing both the mother and infant at risk. In 2005 there were 11 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births published in the United States, The World Health Report 2005. To gain greater acumen into this problem is to ‘look inside’ the complicated process of birth and provide experts with a new perspective to potentially help prevent deaths in the future.

Exploring new applications for advanced imaging technology MRI, German scientists at the Charite University Hospital in Berlin have performed the first live birth using MRI Equipment. By taking multiple images of the same location in the body, a technique called Cinematical MRI, researchers put the images together to create a movie of a live birth revealing how an infant enters the world from inside of the body.

This unique perspective is valuable to doctors; observing how the infant actually moves through the pelvis and birthing canal contributes to medical understanding of birth and how better to conduct birthing procedures. In this way the Charite Study gives the Obstetrics & Gynecology field a fresh educational tool for training purposes. Perhaps moving forward however, a practical MRI Imaging solution could be developed that would assist in cases of risky births to allow delivery staff to see problems sooner and aid in improving the mother’s safety and reduce hospital exposure to malpractice suits.

The birth in the study occurred in November 2011 and it was published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, however the video has only recently been released for public viewing. The mother in the study was not exposed to any health risks. MRI technology is accepted as a safe diagnostic tool over other imaging technology with no proven health risks to pregnant women.