Tag Archives: projectile

ECRI Top 10 Medical Technology Hazards Includes MRI Projectiles

Every year the ECRI Institute publishes their Top 10 health technology hazards, identifying the 10 most serious (and unintended) risks posed by our ever-increasing use of sophisticated medical devices to diagnose and treat patients. In November, the Institute released their 2010 watch list, which dedicated a Top 10 slot, and an entire page, to ferromagnetic projectiles in MRI.

Click To Read More And Get Link To Original Report…

FDA’s MAUDE Database Appears To Be Restored

For a couple of months, at least, the FDA’s MAUDE database wasn’t displaying all of the accident narratives online… This appears to have been fixed!

A number of the MRI accident reports, when the narratives weren’t appearing, were little more than the name and mailing address of the MRI manufacturer. Today, if you want to read about the MR Technologist who had a pair of scissors magnetically-impelled into his forehead, you can do so. So Click Here If You’re Curious…

Colombini Lawsuit For Most Infamous MRI Death – Settled

That’s right. Yesterday, October 26th, the Colombini family formally accepted a settlement offer for the MRI vs. oxygen tank accident which killed their 6-year-old son in 2001. The settlement puts to rest 8 years of litigation resulting from the single largest MRI safety incident in the industry’s consciousness. And though precedent-setting verdicts won’t result, the dollar-value of the settlement will likely cause many MRI providers to sit up and take notice.

Just how much is the settlement? Click Here To Learn More About The Settlement…

The Boy Who Cried “Trial”!

Yes, I think I’ve written at least twice before about the imminent start of the trial for the civil lawsuit stemming from the Michael Colombini fatal MRI accident in 2001. And, yes, I was wrong both times before. So, I would expect nothing less than readers of this entry to take my 3rd prognostication of the start of the trial with something more than a grain of salt… perhaps an entire salt lick! But today a little birdie told me that there’s a hole in the otherwise-booked New York Supreme Court trial schedule for late October / early November and the Colombini trial may just fit right in there.

Click Here To Read More About The Trial…

5 MRI ‘Never Events’

For those unfamiliar with the term, a ‘never event’ is a label used to describe an adverse event that is wholly avoidable by simply following established best practices. For example, if you have an accurate count of the surgical instruments before and after surgery, there should never be an event where the patient leaves the OR with a sponge or clamp sewn up inside of them. A retained surgical instrument, or wrong-site surgery, or bed-sores, or patient mis-identification, or medication errors are all examples of ‘never events’.

Some insurance payers are beginning to refuse reimbursement for care that is necessitated by certain ‘never events’, and that list is likely to grow. And while they may not always result in patient injury, I’d like to propose my own list of 5 MRI ‘never events’ which should at least trigger an investigation…

Click To Read The 5 MRI Never Events…

Has FDA ‘Dumbed-Down’ MAUDE Accident Database?

I like to keep my finger on the pulse of MRI accidents and safety issues. One consequence of this is that I frequent the FDA’s MAUDE database (MAUDE is a tortured acronym for medical device user-reported mishaps). I have long criticized the FDA for their half-hearted efforts at collecting MRI accident data (which, in fairness, appears to be as much a product of congressional limitations on the FDA’s power as anything else), but MAUDE has been the only national database for these accidents that is publicly accessible.

Every so often there is an MRI accident description that is so stunning that it sends a jolt through me, reminding me why I do what I do. This is the entry that I came across just two weeks ago…

Click Here For The Jolting Description…

Colombini Case – Lawsuit Machinations

Last month, the judge in the Michael Colombini lawsuit (the case resulting from the infamous death by oxygen tank / cylinder brought into the MRI room while the boy was in the scanner) decided on three of the last outstanding pre-trial motions. The Judge’s decisions appear to have excused one defendant, entirely, and tempered the degree of potential liability for others.

Click Here To Learn Who’s In, And Who’s Out…

“Aaawwwwww. I’m Tellin’!”

When I was eight, these words struck fear in my heart. It didn’t matter how small the infraction I committed was (or if there even was an infraction to begin with), I would beg the other kid to not ‘tell’ whoever it was that they were planning to tell. It may have been their kindly grandmother that they planned on telling, but in my mind it was always some 7-foot troll who would have undoubtedly come outside and chewed me to bits.

It took a while, but slowly I realized that tellin‘ and getting in trouble were two, very different things. This is a lesson that we in the MRI community would do well to learn regarding accidents.

Click Here To Learn More About Tellin’ And MRI Accidents…

FMD. Don’t We Have Screening Protocols For That?

One of the most oft-cited rationalizations for not complying with contemporary best practices that call for using ferromagnetic detection (FMD) for MRI pre-screening is that ‘FMD doesn’t catch anything that existing screening protocols aren’t meant to catch.’ What you may find surprising about this statement is that I agree with it wholeheartedly… I would just change the inflection a bit. I would say it more like…

Ferromagnetic detection doesn’t catch anything that existing screening protocols aren’t meant to catch.

That inflection makes a world of difference, as you’ll see in just a moment…

Click These Words Here To See What I Mean…

Is Ferromagnetic (Ferrous) Detection Cost Effective?

In a word, ‘Yes,’ but not by the conventional ways that imaging providers are accustomed to...

Would using ferromagnetic detection (FMD), to add a new and effective layer of pre-MRI screening, be reimbursed? What I mean is, is there a CPT code to get paid back for providing this additional service?

No, but the lack of a CPT code has little to do with the fact that using FMD can contribute, directly, to an MRI provider’s bottom-line. In fact, there are two concrete ways, off of the top of my head, that I know have provided financial ‘payback’ to users of ferromagnetic detection systems.

Click Here To Learn How FMD Pays Back…