OEC Mini C-ARM Units and their Role in Medical Procedures

Both Mini- C- arm and full fluoroscopic systems are used in many different practices worldwide for minimally invasive surgical procedures. They can help physicians more clearly identify and diagnose issues in the body. According to Imaging Technology News a full C-arm is used for kidney drainage, abdominal and thoracic aortic aneurysm repair, percutaneous valve replacements, cardiac surgery, vascular surgery, gastroenterology, neuro stimulation, orthopedics, pain management and neurology procedures. Included in the mobile C-arm category are mini C-arms, which are smaller systems used in clinics for sports medicine, orthopedic and podiatric imaging.

These devices are also particularly useful for needle guided procedures and Injections. Programs for treating Osteoarthritis and Osteoporosis would be greatly aided by a fluoroscopy unit, a midlevel whether certified Physician assistant PA or a Nurse Practioner or of course ideally a medical doctor MD, could provide these injections on patients that exhibited these types of conditions. Another popular use and growing trend for fluoroscopy units and even digital ultrasound units is for PRP and stem cell therapy. Regenerative medicine is at the forefront of cutting edge science, and its administering is predominantly done via syringe and injections into soft tissue injuries but also in many other applications such as hair growth and restoration to helping with erectile dysfunction and even Autism and Alzheimer’s in patients. It’s overwhelmingly simply application coupled with phenomenal clinical effect in many cases make this a popular use for many progressive clinicians nationwide.

In terms of make and models there are a couple of industry work horses that still carry the torch of reliable, durable, quality oriented and compared to its higher origin siblings like the OEC 9600 and OEC 9900 models affordable. The OEC Mini C-Arm OEC 6600, 6800 (OEC 6600, and OEC 6800) still carry the gold standard in modern fluoroscopy devices. “There are only a handful of key players in the United States C-arm market, including GE Healthcare/OEC, Philips, Siemens and Ziehm Imaging. Outside the U.S., Shimadzu and Hitachi also sell systems. German-based Ziehm is a market leader in Europe and has made a strong push into the U.S. market over the last few years. In 2009, Philips expanded its product portfolio when it acquired Medtronic’s, the manufacturer of diagnostic and interventional X-ray systems.” Imaging Technology News April 13th, 2011, Fornell Dave.

The Oec 6600 and OEC 6800 can be used in conjunction with C-Arm tables that are designed for X-ray imaging, they are usually composed of carbon fiber to not interfere with the resonance imaging and are also lightweight, flexible and mobile while maintain quality and durability. The use and importance of the mini C-arm and full C-arm or fluoroscopy units have come under more scrutiny in recent years because of other operating room alternatives that offer high resolution imaging but at a higher cost than the mini C-arms. Some of these options include angiographic X-ray imaging systems, however these are static and stationary based devices, therefore a physician will need to weigh mobility and flexibility of the more portable mini c-arm OEC 6600 and OEC 6800 vs a substantially more expensive but even better imaging resolution from the X-RAY angiographic options.

References: Imaging Technology News April 13th, 2011, Fornell Dave. An Introduction to mobile C-arm & X-RAY systems