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DVD Goes to the Hospital

1 Oct, 2002 By: Hive News

It was only a matter of time: medical science is finally finding uses for DVD entertainment.

Siemens Medical Solutions has introduced new e.media technology for its nuclear imaging equipment to addresses emotional stress and improve patient relaxation.

Now standard on Siemens' e.cam Signature Series of nuclear medicine gamma cameras, the manufacturer of the patent-pending e.media audio/visual feature claims it improves diagnostic image quality by making patients feel more at ease with music and video, while clinicians acquire movement-free images for cancer and other diseases.

"Imagine facing the diagnosis of cancer or terminal disease, surrounded by doctors and about to go through a 30-minute examination on an unfamiliar machine. And then imagine being told that you can't move the entire time. This is the current reality for many patients who require nuclear medicine examinations," explains Randy Weatherhead, VP of marketing and sales for Nuclear Medicine Group of Siemens Medical Solutions. "Our new system takes the edge off a procedure like this by allowing patients to watch a movie on DVD or listen to music during an exam. Our goal is to ensure patients are as comfortable and relaxed as possible during scanning procedures, which ultimately equates to better results acquired from the examination," said Weatherhead.

The machine is similar to the eChair that Baxter Health Care introduced last year for blood product donors. That company offers a Web-connected chair with a DVD/CD player to help potential donors find the time to donate. While giving blood may take just a few minutes, donating some blood products can take up to two hours.

"With the length of nuclear medicine exams, patient comfort is always an issue," explains Weatherhead. "e.media addresses this concern by using innovative technologies to make the examination process easier on the patient. This greatly improves result quality and the overall patient experience.”

Nuclear medicine procedures rely on a clear reading, which can only be obtained if the patient is still and relaxed during an examination – an often-difficult task for children and elderly patients. The new e.media system may help by integrating entertainment equipment directly into the gamma camera, allowing patients to view DVDs of their choice or listen to music during the examination. Increased comfort keeps patients from fidgeting, allowing for a clear reading that reduces the need to redo procedures and expedites the examination process.

Not only can patients watch DVDs on the device, it offers expanded patient education and staff training opportunities using discs with tailored content.

In addition, the e.media system also serves as a valuable educational tool that allows patients to learn important information about nuclear medicine procedures, the scanner, and the hospital before the examination begins, also alleviating unnecessary stress to the patient. Another advantage of this system is the ability to train clinicians right on the machine. The DVD feature provides an outlet for practitioners to train on their own schedule, potentially reducing orientation time of new technologists.

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