Cochlear introduces new MRI Kit

Sound Connection | Issue 29 | March 2018

The Cochlear™ Nucleus® Implant Bandage and Splint Kit for Magnetic Resonance Imaging to prevent magnet dislodgement and discomfort at 1.5 T MRI scans.

Cochlear implants and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a common medical procedure, used to capture detailed images of soft tissue and joints. However, some medical implants could create problems. Implants with metallic or ferromagnetic components carry risks, such as device repositioning that may cause pain, weakening of the magnet or poor MRI scan quality due to artefact presence. This potential problem affects all cochlear implants, regardless of the implant brand1.

Routine (1.5 T) MRI is common in orthopaedics and recent research suggests 1.5 T will remain the standard field strength for MRI for many years2. A minority of MRI are high-resolution scans (3.0 T) and these are most common in head and neck scans. Research showed that, in these head and neck scan cases, a cochlear implant magnet would cause a ‘blur’ or ‘artefact’ over the MRI image, hindering result interpretation3. To address this, removal of the magnet prior to the scan is necessary. Cochlear was the first cochlear implant manufacturer introducing a removable magnet nearly two decades ago.

Cochlear’s commercially available Nucleus Implants are all approved for 1.5 T MRI with magnet in place* and for 3.0 T MRI with magnet removed. In addition, they have all been specially designed with an easily removable magnet to address the risk of imaging blurring in head and neck scans.

Availability of the MRI Kit

Since January of this year, Cochlear EMEA is delighted to announce the availability of the MRI Kit to professional partners.

The Cochlear Nucleus Implant Bandage and Splint Kit for MRI – or MRI Kit – is:

  • approved for use on Cochlear Nucleus CI24RE and Profile implant recipients

  • to prevent implant magnet dislodgement during MRI scans at 1.5 T with the implant magnet in place

Every MRI Kit includes the Cochlear Nucleus Implants MRI Guidelines. It is recommended that practitioners read the Instructions for Use in conjunction with the relevant documents that accompany a Cochlear Nucleus Implant, such as the Physician’s Guide and the Important Information booklet.

What the MRI contains and how to use it

The MRI Kit contains:

  • two flat plastic splints (one per implant in bilateral cases),

  • a specific elasticised compression bandage, for securing splint(s) over the implant magnet site,

  • surgical tape, for securing the bandage and splint(s) in place

In addition to the information provided in the MRI Guidelines,instructions are also provided here





Cochlear™ Nucleus® Implants Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Guidelines

Cochlear™ Nucleus® Implant Bandage and Splint Kit for MRI (MRI Kit) – Instructions



  1. Bo Gyung Kim, M. P., Jin Won Kim, M., Jeong Jin Park, M., Sung Huhn Kim, M. P., Hee Nam Kim, M. P., & Jae Young Choi, M.P. (2014). Adverse Events and Discomfort during Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Cochlear Implant Recipients. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surgery. Published online November 20, 2014. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2014.2929.
  2. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Market by Architecture (open MRI, closed MRI), field strength (low-to-mid field, high field, very high field, ultra-high field) & applications (brain, spine, cardiac, breast, abdominal) - Global Forecast to 2020, 2015.
  3. Wagner F., Wimmer W., Leidolt L., Vischer M., Weder S., Wiest R. et al. (2015). Significant Artifact Reduction at 1.5T and 3T MRI by the Use of a Cochlear Implant with Removable Magnet: An Experimental Human Cadaver Study. PLoS ONE 10(7): e0132483.

* Using a pressure bandage with splint (MRI Kit) under the conditions and instructions provided in the Cochlear MRI Guidelines