Xoran Technologies: Bringing High-Quality CT Scanning to the Point-of-Care
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Laura Dennis, VP of Sales and Marketing A 19-year-old male patient lies in the intensive care unit (ICU) of a hospital. Having been involved in a motor vehicle accident, the individual sustained a basilar skull fracture along with multiple other injuries. The physicians attending to him wanted to identify if the internal bleeding in the brain is resolving or getting worse. As such, they were preparing to wheel the patient down to the radiology department for a computed tomography (CT) scan.
However, they were faced with a challenge. Since the patient had a head injury, doctors needed fast, reliable imaging results to provide appropriate treatment. But, the conventional process of transporting the patient from the ICU to the radiology department, performing the scan, and then waiting for the results (which can take a minimum of 24 hours), is a time consuming and arduous process, with many potential risks to the patient.
What if instead of taking the patient to the CT scanner, there was a way to bring the scanner to the patient?
This is the idea that dawned upon two research scientists from the University of Michigan when they realized there was a lack of convenient and quick access CT scanners that could provide improved diagnostic performance directly at the point of care. This led them to lay the foundation for Xoran Technologies in 2001. A Michigan-based firm, Xoran, offers compact, specialized mobile CT scanners specifically designed for the patient at the point-of-care. Xoran’s CT scanners are designed to improve and simplify medical imaging and healthcare as a whole, one patient at a time. In the past 18 years, the company has installed more than 800 CT scanners—domestically and internationally.
Improved Imaging Outcomes
Laura Dennis, vice president of sales and marketing at Xoran says, “We initially started with designing small, upright CT scanners for the ear, nose, and throat (ENT) and allergy space.” What perhaps speaks for itself is the xCAT IQ’s devices’ small footprint, easy maneuverability, mobility, low radiation dose (10 to 12 times lower than conventional CT scanners), high-quality imaging, and the ability to offer scan results almost immediately.
Xoran’s xCAT IQ is a truly mobile volume CT designed for use in the OR and ICU. The company’s flagship MiniCAT is an in-office, point-of-care imaging solution for ENT and allergy physicians
These benefits have not only dramatically impacted the quality of care being delivered but also improved patient outcomes. Moreover, the point-of-care CT scanners have also increased patient compliance for completing the scan significantly.
Point-of-Care Imaging Where the Patient Needs It
Xoran’s flagship product, MiniCAT, is an in-office, point-of-care imaging solution for ENT and Allergy physicians. The upright MiniCAT CT scanner is specifically designed for scanning of the sinuses, skull base, and the temporal bone. The scanner’s unique design allows patients to sit in a comfortable position on a chair— without sedation—while an overhead arm makes a single rotation around their head and takes the scan. Within 40 seconds or less, the doctors can view the image and the results on the monitor. The scanner’s upright position eliminates the claustrophobic fears that many patients, especially children, experience when entering the bore of a standard full tube CT scanner.
Portable, Precise, Unparalleled CT Scanners
Moving the innovation needle forward, xCAT IQ, Xoran’s ultra-compact, mobile, cone beam CT scanner, on the other hand, is exclusively designed for the neurosurgical suite and neuro ICU. The device provides real-time CT scans of the brain and is applicable for bone window imaging. “Because the xCAT IQ is highly maneuverable (allowing 360-degree rotation) in tight spaces and easy-to-use, patients can be scanned directly at their point-of-care and need not be transported out of surgery or recovery to a remotely located radiology suite for an often-necessary CT scan,” adds Laura. xCAT IQ has applications in ENT, otology, minimally invasive cochlear implants, as well as cranio-maxillofacial surgeries.
ENT surgeons and practice administrators that have integrated Xoran’s point-of-care CTs into their practice have witnessed improved productivity, profitability, and patient satisfaction. In fact, surgeons using the products state that the intraoperative CT scanners enable them to improve their clinical outcomes in sinus and cochlear implant surgeries and to reduce the need for revision surgeries.
Enhancing Offsite Storage and Backup
Alongside the suite of specialized CT scanners, Xoran also offers a HIPAA compliant, web-based medical image viewing and archival tool, XoranConnect, which provides online viewing, offsite archival and backup of scanned images along with access to the information for both providers and patients. Currently, the service complements the MiniCAT product suite, and Xoran is working on expanding this capability for the xCAT IQ. “We are also planning to integrate machine learning and AI-powered algorithms to XoranConnect. This would allow remote diagnosis validation,” mentions Laura. Thus, with Xoran’s state-of-the-art scanners aided by artificial intelligence, early stroke detection—both in the emergency room and through telemedicine in rural, suburban, and urban areas—will allow for improved outcomes and reduced hospital stays.
Continued Innovation along the Way
Recently, Xoran received an eight million dollar SBIR grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This funding will help the firm integrate and commercialize its xCAT IQ with surgical navigation and develop a mobile CT imaging solution for the spine. “It will make minimally invasive neurosurgery procedures safer and more widely available. Access to a low dose, affordable yet incredibly nimble, imaging system means that patients can be treated more quickly, accurately, and comfortably,” exclaims Laura. The Xoran team also believes this grant will enable the firm to continue to innovate and support its mission of providing convenient and simple CT technology that improves patient outcomes at lowered costs.
Management Laura Dennis, VP of Sales and Marketing
Description A MI-based firm, Xoran offers compact, specialized CT scanners designed for use in in-office, ICU and operating rooms. The company’s innovative product line consists of MiniCAT IQ, and xCAT IQ, which are designed to eliminate waste and inefficiency in healthcare. The firm was founded in 2001 by two research scientists from the University of Michigan with the goal of developing innovative technologies that enable physicians to treat their patients more efficiently and effectively. In the past 18 years, the company has installed more than 800 CT scanners domestically and internationally. What perhaps speaks for itself is the devices’ small footprint, low radiation dose, high-quality imaging, and the ability to offer scan results almost immediately
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