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First Truly Portable Gamma Camera Brings Molecular Imaging to Patient Bedside

By MedImaging International staff writers
Posted on 12 Jun 2023
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Image: Seracam is a truly portable system for point of care molecular imaging (Photo courtesy of Serac Imaging)
Image: Seracam is a truly portable system for point of care molecular imaging (Photo courtesy of Serac Imaging)

A revolutionary portable system for molecular imaging at the point of care enables imaging right at the patient’s bedside. This advancement eliminates the need for transporting patients and nursing staff to the nuclear medicine department, which can be challenging for certain patient groups, like those in the ICU or pediatric wards.

The Seracam portable hybrid gamma-optical camera developed by Serac Imaging Systems (London, UK) forms images showing the distribution of an administered radiopharmaceutical within a patient's body, assisting in diagnosing or monitoring diseases. The device uses a microcolumnar CsI(Tl) crystal scintillator to convert gamma photons into optical ones detected by a semiconductor. The compact camera head, with a 6-inch (15 cm) diameter and weighing less than 5 kg, offers easy portability throughout the hospital by a single operator. Its plug-and-play connection ensures readiness within minutes, anywhere in the hospital. Its small size enables close proximity to the patient, enhancing image resolution and acquisition times. Moreover, its fully articulated arm facilitates easy positioning of the camera head to ensure patient comfort.

The device features a pinhole collimator, which allows operators to determine the optimal balance of image resolution, acquisition speed, and field of view for individual cases. Automatic aperture size adjustment without changing parts ensures quick, flexible solutions for various clinical applications. The built-in optical detector shares the same field of view, regardless of imaging distance or angle, allowing for overlaying of optical and gamma images with no parallax and real-time image streaming to the control PC.

By offering an alternative to conventional gamma/SPECT cameras for imaging organs and structures within a small, portable footprint, Seracam enhances the capacity within a nuclear medicine department without the need for an additional camera room and facilitates point-of-care molecular imaging throughout the hospital. Seracam is currently undergoing clinical testing in a six-month study involving 25 patients. Potential applications include imaging small organs such as the thyroid, bone, renal, infection imaging, lymphatic imaging, and sentinel lymph node localization.

“We believe that the combination of the co-aligned gamma-optical hybrid imaging capability, alongside the compact size and portability of the camera, have real potential to improve and expand nuclear imaging options, diagnosis and outcomes for patients,” said Mark Rosser, Chief Executive Officer of Serac Imaging Systems.

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