Safety evaluation of titanium middle ear prostheses at 3.0 tesla

Angela D. Martin, Colin L.W. Driscoll, Christopher P. Wood, Joel P. Felmlee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To assess the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) safety of titanium middle ear prostheses at 3.0 tesla (T). STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: Titanium middle ear prostheses from 3 commercial vendors were examined for magnetic field interactions at 3 T. Initially, ex vivo studies were performed to test for rotational motion and forward displacement (translational motion) of the prostheses in a static magnetic field. If movement was observed during this screening study, then the prosthesis was tested to determine the translational or rotational force acting upon the prosthesis. In addition to testing for prosthesis displacement, temperature changes of the prostheses were measured to assess for radiofrequency heating during imaging. RESULTS: Twenty-one of the 24 titanium prostheses tested revealed no movement when tested in the 3 T static magnetic field. Three prostheses revealed minimal movement during the screening study. A translational force test (string test) was performed upon these 3 prostheses, and the measured angle of displacement was used to determine the force. This calculated force acting upon each prosthesis was essentially zero. Therefore, we conclude that the magnetic field interaction is negligible. A positive control with a ferromagnetic stainless steel prosthesis demonstrated obvious displacement during the screening study, as well as deflection of the prosthesis by 90°in the translational force test. Last, heating of the titanium prostheses did not occur in the 7 models tested. CONCLUSIONS: Middle ear prostheses made from titanium are safe, neither deflecting nor heating during magnetic resonance examinations conducted at 3 T. EBM rating: C-1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)537-542
Number of pages6
JournalOtolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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