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Dynamic Volume CT System Enables Faster and More Accurate Diagnosis

Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc., a leader in diagnostic and medical imaging, will feature the world's first dynamic volume computed tomography (CT) system - the Aquilion ONE(TM) at this year's American College of Cardiology (ACC) annual meeting in Chicago, March 30 - April 1, 2008 (Booth # 8001). This advanced diagnostic imaging system revolutionizes patient care because it can help reduce diagnosis time for life threatening diseases like heart disease and stroke from days and hours to mere minutes.

For the first time, physicians can see not only a three-dimensional depiction of an organ, but also the organ's dynamic blood flow and function. Unlike any other CT system, the Aquilion ONE can scan one organ - including the heart, brain and others - in one rotation because it covers up to 16 cm of anatomy using 320 ultra high resolution 0.5 mm detector elements. This reduces exam time, as well as radiation and contrast dose. With the Aquilion ONE, the organ or area is captured in a single rotation at one moment in time, eliminating the need to reconstruct slices from multiple points in time.

With its ability to perform uniquely comprehensive exams, including functional studies, the Aquilion ONE reduces the need for multiple, duplicative tests and invasive procedures. As a result of this breakthrough technology, healthcare costs can be reduced because unnecessary tests can be eliminated and diagnosis times are faster.

“The introduction of dynamic volume CT marks an important milestone in the history of CT,” said Doug Ryan, senior director, CT Business Unit, Toshiba America Medical Systems. “Aquilion ONE is the culmination of a decade of dedicated research and establishes a new frontier in imaging, offering advanced applications that can significantly enhance patient care while reducing the cost of healthcare worldwide.”

Real-world Patient Benefits

For patients exhibiting symptoms of heart conditions, diagnosis time can be reduced from days to minutes. Typically, patients who exhibit symptoms of chest pain are given multiple tests to identify the problem, including an EKG, calcium study, CT angiography (CTA), nuclear test and catheterization. Tests of this nature could take days to complete and would expose the patient to significant radiation and contrast dose. With the Aquilion ONE, a single comprehensive exam can give physicians all of the information they need to diagnose and treat the patient in less than 20 minutes and with significantly less contrast and radiation dose.

The Aquilion ONE also has the potential to save lives and improve the quality of life for patients with neurological symptoms, specifically related to stroke. When a patient comes to a hospital's emergency room (ER) exhibiting stroke symptoms, it can take hours to diagnose and treat the patient when time is of the essence. Typically, stroke patients will be taken first to the hospital's CT system, but with current CT technology, results can be inconclusive and additional tests such as MR exams are necessary, extending diagnosis time to as much as four or more hours. With the Aquilion ONE, time-to-diagnosis can be dramatically reduced to minutes because complete functional data is acquired accurately and quickly with less radiation and contrast. This improved diagnosis time could greatly impact patient quality of life.

The Path to Dynamic Volume CT

Toshiba's road to dynamic volume CT began a decade ago. The development of the Quantum Detector technology platform made it possible to produce the industry's thinnest detector elements at 0.5 mm with the industry's best low contrast resolution. In addition, this completely new system is equipped with innovative features including an exam table that accommodates up to 660 lbs and coneXact dynamic volume CT reconstruction.

In 2006 and early 2007, Aquilion ONE beta systems were tested at Fujita Health University and the National Cancer Center in Japan and Johns Hopkins University in the U.S. Feedback from the beta systems have been integrated into the system to ensure the best possible clinical outcomes.

U.S. commercial units have been installed at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. Worldwide installations also have taken place at Fujita Health University in Japan; Humboldt University, Campus Charité Mitte in Germany; and University Health Network in Canada. Additional installations will be completed in early 2008 and full commercial availability will take place this summer.

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