Children’s Minnesota among first pediatric hospitals to install new, revolutionary CT scanner

(ABC 6 News) – Children’s Minnesota announced it is the first pediatric hospital in Minnesota, and second in the United States to install a new, revolutionary CT scanner.

Siemens Naeotom Alpha with Quantum Technology is the world’s first photon-counting CT scanner and allows surgeons to view 3-D moving images of a child’s heart before they operate. The scanner’s improved image quality and resolution and increased diagnostic information will look to benefit patients.

Alpha uses 45% less radiation compared to conventional CT scanners, making it safer for patients and staff. The technology is aimed to help improve surgical success and patient outcomes.

Naeotom Alpha® (Alpha) with Quantum Technology (Courtesy: Children’s Minnesota)

“The Alpha CT scanner technology is revolutionary in the world of medical diagnostics, allowing us to better visualize tiny structures and increase diagnostic accuracy in even the smallest of babies, with incredibly low radiation doses,” said Dr. Angela Kelle, cardiologist at Children’s Minnesota. “These CT images are part of the expert care we provide to patients, helping to make Children’s Minnesota a national destination for pediatric care.” 

Children’s Minnesota said they began using Alpha to scan patients this fall. The Alpha’s photon counting uses newly designed energy-resolving x-ray detectors to count the number of incoming photons and quantify photon energy.

Some of the scanner’s benefits include:

  • Cutting spatial resolution nearly in half which is critical in pediatric heart care, especially for premature babies with the tiniest vessels.
  • Alpha’s speed allows cardiac CT scans to happen in just seconds, most of the time without needing anesthesia or a breathing tube, even in the smallest of patients.
  • All relevant CT results will be provided in one single scan providing answers for patients and referring physicians.
  • Higher contrast-to-noise ratio, improved spatial resolution and optimized spectral imaging compared to conventional CT scanners.

To learn more about Children’s Minnesota, CLICK HERE.