St.Jude’s Sat Nav Imaging Reduces Radiation Exposure

In short

St. Jude Medical, Inc. has announced the launch of its MediGuide™ Technology, which it claims is the first and only three-dimensional (3-D) navigation system intended for the evaluation of vascular and cardiac anatomy on a recorded fluoroscopic image instead of live fluoroscopy.


Worldwide, physicians perform several billion radiation-based imaging studies annually, approximately one-third of which are in cardiovascular patients. According to the American Heart Association, the collective dose of ionising radiation that patients annually received during medical tests increased among the general population an estimated 600 percent between 1980 and 2006.

The prinicple on which MediGuide works is similar to a GPS device, using recorded images to allow physicians to reduce the duration of radiation exposure during cardiovascular procedures.

As with GPS used in the car or on the golf course, the “map” is fixed, in this case by locating miniature sensors embedded in devices, such as the MediGuide Enabled™ Livewire™ Diagnostic Catheter and the CPS Excel™ MediGuide Enabled™ Guidewire. This technology works by applying 3-D visualisation to previously recorded fluoroscopic images in real-time, allowing physicians to see the precise location and orientation of MediGuide Enabled™ devices inside the heart.

Automatic adjustments are made to the recorded images to maintain an accurate real-time clinical representation, compensating for cardiac motion, respiratory changes and patient movements in order to minimise workflow delays.

With this leap forward in medical imaging St.Jude clearly aspires to revolutionise these procedures in the electrophysiology (EP) lab and in so doing reverse the dramatic increase in human exposure to ionising radiation that has taken place in recent decades.

Physician comments

“The launch of MediGuide Technology is significant as it allows clinicians to perform cardiac procedures with less fluoroscopy and the corresponding exposure to harmful radiation,” said Dhanunjaya Lakkireddy, M.D., cardiologist at the University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City, Kan., the first medical facility in the U.S. to use the MediGuide Technology system. “This revolutionary system reduces the need for live fluoroscopy, while providing unprecedented views inside the heart, improving complex cardiac resynchronisation therapy and cardiac ablation image-guided procedures for physicians, patients and medical staff around the world.”

Company comments

“MediGuide Technology is the only real-time cardiac navigation and visualisation platform that allows physicians to reduce fluoroscopy during cardiac procedures,” said Frank J. Callaghan, president of the St. Jude Medical Cardiovascular and Ablation Technologies Division. “St. Jude Medical continues to be committed to developing technologies that minimise radiation exposure in the EP lab, improve procedural repeatability and increase clinical and economic efficiency.”

Source: St.Jude Medical Inc., Business wire