German researcher Dr. Jens Frahm of the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttigen have developed technology that advances the insightfulness of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). With this technology, called FLASH2, Frahm was able to accelerate the imaging to 100 frames per second, allowing for real time results. This is particularly important, especially during emergency situations. To demonstrate this amazing technology, the Institute created three separate videos – one that shows a patient speaking and singing in German, as well as and an incredible video showing movement of the thorax within the chest.
Frahm and his team finally solved the problem of the high number of required individual measurements with FLASH2. Simply put, FLASH2 is the FLASH technology with video function: It uses a new mathematical process for image reconstruction and thus manages only a few individual measurements per image. The technique significantly accelerated MRI scans once more and allowed for up to 100 frames per second. FLASH2 makes live processes inside the body visible – a major step forward in medical diagnostics. For the first time, it is possible to directly observe joint movements, speech movements, swallowing processes or the beating heart and draw conclusions about why the knee hurts when bending, someone suffering from heartburn, stutters or pain in the chest area.
Real-time MRI image of the natural movements of the ribcage: respiration and heartbeat are clearly visible. In contrast to clinical practice with conventional magnetic resonance tomographs, the patient does not have to hold his breath here thanks to the fast frame rate, nor does the patient need to be controlled via the ECG signal.