The October 30th NE Ohio SMRT Chapter Educational Seminar, held in Salem, Ohio, was a huge success! MRI technologists from all over northeast Ohio came out on a beautiful Fall Sunday to participate in this kick-off chapter meeting.

Kris Barnhart, President of the chapter, welcomed all attendees. Kathy Hampton then spoke on the benefits of SMRT membership to the group of over 50 technologists. Chris Hawks was our moderator for the meeting, and introduced our first speaker, Dr. Peter Apicella, a Radiologist from Salem Community Hospital.

Dr. Apicella’s presentation was entitled, “Stroke: Diagnosis, Imaging and Therapy”. This very informative talk focused on the risk factors, symptoms, causes, and preventative measures of strokes. Also covered were methods of evaluation, including CT and MR Perfusion, and the more common MR pulse sequences used to diagnose strokes.

Next up was Mr. Mark Canupp, R.T.(R)(MR), who presented on “MR of the Breast”. Mark’s very thorough presentation included the following topics: MR sequences for breast imaging, subtraction techniques, specificity vs. sensitivity, routine protocols, patient positioning, and emerging technology such as the RODEO technique.

After a quick lunch, and a chance to mingle, we resumed our meeting with the ever-popular Dr. Frank Shellock, whose presentation, “MR Safety”, was a showstopper! Dr. Shellock covered all of the basic aspects of MR safety, and then expounded on that with up to the minute information on the newest implants and state of the art pacemakers that all MR technologists should be on the lookout for. He also explained the newest safety terms that we should make ourselves familiar with in the upcoming year.

Our fourth and final speaker was Ms. Carolyn Kaut Roth, RT (R)(MR)(CT)(M)(CV), who brings fun to the MR world with her down to earth presentation style. Candi presented two topics, “MR Parameters, Options & Artifacts”, and “MR Pulse Sequences”. She talked about MR parameter tradeoffs, and the effects on signal to noise when parameters are changed. She also discussed the different types of coils, and common artifacts. Without a break, she went into a discussion of MR pulse sequences, which can be a somewhat boring topic, unless you have Candi to lighten things up. She explained the main MR pulse sequences, how they compare and contrast to one another, and touched on the basic MR parameters necessary for successful imaging.

We received very positive comments on the seminar, and we plan to host two educational seminars each year. We are very grateful to the SMRT for their guidance and support of our new chapter, and to our corporate sponsors who gave very generously to help make this meeting a success!
Stay tuned for info on our next meeting 
to be held in the fall of 2009.
The Northeast Ohio SMRT recently held its 2nd annual meeting on September 24th/2006 at Akron City Hospital in Akron, Ohio. The chapter welcomed technologists from all over Northeast Ohio as well as Western Pennsylvania.

Vice President Kristy Bates extended a warm welcome to those in attendance. Moderator Chris Hawks then introduced our first speaker, Dr. Scott Weiner, a local orthopaedic oncologist. Dr Weiner’s dynamic presentation included orthopaedic applications in imaging, as well as orthopaedic oncology and pathology.

We then welcomed the star of National Geographic’s “Mummy Road Show”, Jerry Conlogue. Jerry specializes in paleoimaging. This very unique lecture included the use of modern imaging techniques to study mummy remains in Egypt, Peru, and other parts of the world.

Following a luncheon and an opportunity to network with fellow colleagues, we resumed our meeting with Dawn Thompson, an applications supervisor for Hitachi Medical Systems. She spoke on the benefits and pitfalls of ACR accreditation. Dawn walked us through the entire process of accreditation, from the initial application, to the ultimate goal of obtaining that final accreditation status. She also explained common causes of failures, as well as hints to pass successfully.

Our final speaker for the day was our very own Melissa Loudon. Melissa is our chapter treasurer and is also an instructor for the MRI program at Kent State University. Melissa tackled the tough subject of MRI physics. She was able to lighten this difficult topic with her great sense of humor. Melissa explained the basics of MRI imaging, as well as a review of pulse sequence parameters.

The meeting was a huge success. We are looking forward to future meetings, which will be held annually every fall.

The Third Annual NE Ohio SMRT Educational Seminar was held in Akron, Ohio, on November 11th, 2007. This was by far our biggest seminar ever! Over 100 MRI technologists attended this full day seminar to earn 7 CE credits, and to mingle with friends old and new. Vendor tables were set up for those freebies we all love, and technologists enjoyed free breakfast, lunch, and free parking!

Kris Barnhart, President of the chapter, welcomed all attendees. Kristy Bates, Vice-president, was our moderator for the meeting, and introduced our first speaker, the well-known MR guru, Dr. Manny Kanal.

Dr. Kanal spoke to us for nearly two hours on Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF), a definite hot topic in MRI. As always, Dr. Kanal used every day analogies that helped us understand kidney disease, Glomerular Filtration Rates, and how the most common MR contrast agents are linked to this disease. The question and answer portion of his talk lasted almost as long as his presentation!

Next up was Dr. Barry McNulty, a Neuroradiologist from Mercy Medical Center, who presented “Emergent MRI of the Central Nervous System”. Dr. McNulty’s very thorough presentation included the following topics: what constitutes an emergent exam as well as specific pulse sequences to assist in the interpretation of the exam.

Following Dr. McNulty was Mr. Stephen Griffin, Esq., who gave a very informative talk on medical malpractice, entitled “Radioactive Litigation”. We learned how to avoid malpractice (document, document, document!) and more importantly, what not to do and how not to act.

After a quick lunch, our meeting resumed with Ashok Saraswat, M.S. B.Ed.R.T. (R) (MR), who spoke to us about “MARS: Metallic Artifact Reduction Strategies”. The first portion of his talk was a review of basic physics. Next, Ashok pointed out some common sense solutions to rid images of metallic artifacts, such as lowering the TE and increasing bandwidth.

Our next speaker’s topic complemented Dr. Kanal’s talk. Dr. Karl Kim, with Bayer Research, presented “Fundamental Properties of Gadolinium-based Contrast Agents”. Dr. Kim explained why we use gadolinium as a contrast agent, its molecular structure, and the differences between the ionic and non-ionic varieties.

Our sixth and final speaker was Mr. Charles Stanley, CRA, R.T. (R) (MR)(CT), from the University of Virginia, who ended our seminar with a bang! Mr. Stanley spoke to us about “MR Unsafety: The Effects of the Mass Media on Public Perception of MRI Safety”. He gathered clips of TV shows and news articles to show how the media depicts MR to the public. His talk was informative, made us laugh, and was a great way to end the day.

We were thrilled to have such a great turnout, and extend a big thank you to the area technologists who came out to support this meeting! We are very grateful to the SMRT for their continued support, and to our corporate sponsors who gave very generously to help make this meeting a success!
The NEOSMRT recently held their 4th annual meeting on September 20, 2008.Over 40 technologists attended this meeting to earn 7 category A credits. This full day seminar featured Candi Roth and Charles Stanley. We learned ways to manage stress in the workplace, how to communicate more effectively, and explored many MRI safety topics. The technologists enjoyed chair massages, as well as many door prizes, including a Football Hall of Fame package. We are grateful to the SMRT as well as to our corporate sponsors for their continued support of the Northeast Ohio local chapter.
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