MRI and medical considerations

Learn how Cochlear™ implants are designed for MRI compatibility.

What you'll find on this page

  • Information about getting an MRI with a Nucleus® implant.
  • Information about getting an MRI with a Baha® implant.
  • How Cochlear designs implants that are compatible with MRIs.

MRIs can range in strength from 0.2 T to 7.0 T, with 1.5 T being the most common.1

Cochlear Nucleus Implants: designed for MRI compatibility

If you or your child needs an MRI, or Magnetic Resonance Imaging, you want to know that the procedure is safe.

We designed the Nucleus Profile™ Plus Series Implant so you can have a routine 1.5 T MRI or high-definition 3.0 T MRI without removing its magnet*. This means no additional surgery, no need to wear a bandage in the MRI machine, no waiting for your scan and, most importantly, no unnecessary time without sound.

Our other Nucleus and CI24RE/Freedom® implants are compatible for MRI up to 3.0 Tesla (T) with the magnet removed and 1.5 T with the magnet in place.1

Many people never need to have an MRI scan, and if you have a cochlear implant, there may be other diagnostic tools available to use. In fact, 85% of radiology professionals agree that they have an alternative diagnostic tool for those who cannot undergo an MRI due to having a device or implant with a magnet.2

Removing the magnet for improved MRI head and neck scans

If you need an MRI scan of your head, the presence of a cochlear implant magnet will distort the scan image at any MRI strength. Regardless of which implant brand you have, MRI scans of the brain usually require magnet removal.

Cochlear Nucleus implant magnets can be removed before your MRI scan for a better image outcome, and for compatibility with stronger MRI technology being developed for the future.

You can remove and replace the implant magnet with a medical procedure if needed. In the rare case that you or your child will need ongoing MRIs, a no-magnet option is available.

MRI-compatible implants

Cochlear was the first manufacturer to introduce cochlear implants with removable magnets in 1997. Our removable magnet means that if you were implanted more than 20 years ago you can still access today's MRI technology, as well as future advances.

Committed to helping you

MRI compatibility is just one of many considerations when choosing a cochlear implant system. Combined with our exceptional reliability record and industry-leading electrode technology, everything about our implant design supports our commitment to help our recipients.

Blurred MRI with magnet in place. Image courtesy of  The Hannover Medical School Department of Neuroradiology, Hannover, Germany

MRI for Cochlear Baha systems

For the Baha Connect system, as long as the sound processor is removed, you can be scanned by MRI. There will be some slight shadow effects caused by the implant and the abutment.

For the Baha Attract system, as there is an implanted magnet, the system is conditionally approved to 1.5 Tesla and there will be a large area of shadow.

For any additional strength MRI or to reduce shadow area, the magnet can be temporarily removed by a medical procedure. The sound processor should be removed for all MRI.

Prior to receiving an MRI, please consult with your clinician about proper precautions. Further information for radiographers:


Baha Connect


Baha Attract

Disclaimer

Please seek advice from your health professional about treatments for hearing loss. Outcomes may vary, and your health professional will advise you about the factors which could affect your outcome. Always read the instructions for use. Not all products are available in all countries. Please contact your local Cochlear representative for product information.

* The following implants are designed to be compatible for MRI at 1.5 T and at 3.0 T with the magnet in place: Nucleus Profile Plus: CI612, CI622, CI632.

References

  1. Magnetic Imaging Resonance (MRI) Forecast to 2020; MarketsandMarkets; 2016.