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Hyperfine launches AI-powered brain imaging tech

Medical device maker Hyperfine announced Tuesday the launch of the latest software update for its portable magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain scanner called Swoop. The eighth-generation release features upgrades to image quality, patient positioning, image uploads, and diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) based on artificial intelligence (AI).

The Connecticut-based company said its proprietary AI algorithms now enable enhanced denoising for Swoop's DWI scans. DWI is an important MRI technique for evaluating stroke and neurological conditions.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) initially granted clearance for the software's DWI enhancement in October 2022 and the changes are now being deployed to already installed Swoop units within customer hospitals. Hyperfine said over 50 patient exams have been conducted thus far in a limited market release.

The update also introduces two new ease-of-use features - real-time positioning guidance and streamlined image uploads. Users reported the positioning check improved setup speed and efficiency while helping guarantee scan quality right off the bat. Similarly, the revamped image upload pipeline resulted in faster completion times. Both changes directly lower barriers in adopting and benefitting from the portable MRI system.

"Our focus on image quality with this latest software has been on the DWI sequence, which is key in stroke imaging...we've been dedicated to continually enhancing image quality and workflow efficiencies to define best-in-class, user-centric, ultra-low field MR brain imaging," stated Hyperfine COO Tom Teisseyre.

Hyperfine markets Swoop as the world's first FDA-cleared and portable MRI scanner designed for point-of-care settings. The compact system did away with the need for specialized rooms and infrastructure required by conventional MRI machines. This enables rapid deployment into hospital emergency departments and intensive care units to diagnose time-sensitive neurological conditions.

The latest update represents a doubling down on this strategy to minimize obstacles and maximize clinician utility through AI and automation. Hyperfine said it now aims to complete the rollout for all Swoop units over the coming weeks, solidifying its position as an agile innovator in point-of-care neurodiagnostics.

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