Objective: To capture practice and opinions around the current clinical use of MRI in patients with cochlear implants (CIs), and to characterise patient progression from referral to image reporting. Methods: An online survey recruited 237 healthcare professionals between 9 December 2019 and 9 September 2020. Descriptive statistics and informal thematic analyses were conducted. Results: Respondents estimated that approximately 75% of CI users referred for an MRI proceeded to image acquisi-tion, of which ~70% of cases comprised image acquisition on the head and the remaining cases on another area. They estimated that the proportion of these images that were usable was 93 and 99%, respectively. Confidence in most processes was high, with at least two-thirds of respondents reporting to be very or somewhat confident in obtaining consent and acquiring images. Conversely, fewer than half the respondents had the same confidence when splinting and bandaging the implant and troubleshooting any issues arising. Patient safety was rated of paramount importance, with patient comfort a clear second and image quality third. Conclusion: These findings highlight the need for consistent publication of clear, succinct, and standardised operating procedures for scanning patients with CIs and the require-ment for regular training of radiographic and radiological healthcare professionals to address the heterogeneity of devices available. Advances in knowledge: There is a need to improve the communication to radiography and radiology personnel regarding the nature of CIs, the heterogeneity of devices in existence, and the key differences between them. CI users risk being underserved by diagnostic medical imaging.
Dewey, R. S., Bowtell, R., & Kitterick, P. (2022). A global survey of healthcare professionals undertaking MRI of patients with cochlear implants: a heterogeneity of practice and opinions. British Journal of Radiology, 95(1137), Article 20220213. https://doi.org/10.1259/bjr.20220213