Kernspin as a delivery room

World premiere: First observed birth of a child on open MRI

The last few seconds before the birth, an MR image just before the exit of the head. © Charité - University Medicine Berlin
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A Berlin-based team of scientists has now made a world premiere: The researchers followed the birth of a child for the first time in a so-called open magnetic resonance tomograph (MRI). The innovative device allows doctors and midwives a good access to mother and child through its design.

Through the collaboration of the birth doctor Dr. med. Christan Bamberg, the radiologist Ulf Teichgräber and the engineer and project leader Felix Güttler from the Charité - Universitätsmedizin also get unique pictures of the mother's body and of the child's movement in the birth canal up to the exit of the head. The birth was without complications. Mother and child are well, according to the scientists.

Two-year research and development work

The spectacular birth in an open MRI was preceded by a two-year research and development work by the radiological-technical team "open high-field MRI", in which, among other things, a novel fetal monitoring monitor was created. This enabled the monitoring of the heart sounds of the child on MRI during the birth process.

Open magnetic resonance tomograph © Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin

The interdisciplinary research group now wants to examine in a further step the ideas that have been developed since the 19th century about the birth process and the movements of the unborn child in the maternal pelvis on the basis of further investigations.

Cause of frequent birth complications on the trail

Researchers led by Professor Bernd Hamm from the Institute of Radiology and colleagues from the Clinic for Obstetrics around Professor Ernst Beinder work closely together. The goal of the scientists is, inter alia, to understand better in the future, why in 15 percent of pregnant women in the birth due to a birth arrest, a caesarean delivery is necessary. display

(Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 08.12.2010 - DLO)