Temperature measurement on neurological pulse generators during MR scans

Wolfgang Kainz, Georg Neubauer, Richard Überbacher, Francois Alesch, Dulcinana Dias Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


According to manufacturers of both magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, and implantable neurological pulse generators (IPGs), MRI is contraindicated for patients with IPGs. A major argument for this restriction is the risk to induce heat in the leads due to the electromagnetic field, which could be dangerous for the surrounding brain parenchyma. The temperature change on the surface of the case of an ITREL-III (Medtronic Inc., Minneapolis, MN) and the lead tip during MRI was determined. An anatomical realistic and a cubic phantom, filled with phantom material mimicking human tissue, and a typical lead configuration were used to imitate a patient who carries an IPG for deep brain stimulation. The measurements were performed in a 1.5 T and a 3.0 T MRI. 2.1°C temperature increases at the lead tip uncovered the lead tip as the most critical part concerning heating problems in IPGs. Temperature increases in other locations were low compared to the one at the lead tip. The measured temperature increase of 2.1°C can not be considered as harmful to the patient. Comparison with the results of other studies revealed the avoidance of loops as a practical method to reduce heating during MRI procedures.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBioMedical Engineering Online
Publication statusPublished - 2002

Research Field

  • Biosensor Technologies


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