March 14, 2023

ACR seeks radiologic community input regarding new MRI safety guidelines

American College of Radiology releases draft manual with substantial new content


The American College of Radiology® (ACR®) requests feedback related to the recently released draft ACR Manual on Magnetic Resonance (MR) Safety. This version builds on prior editions with substantial new content and safety recommendations.

The manual is used by MR practitioners, technologists, administrators, patients and other healthcare personnel. The principles found within are intended to apply to clinical diagnostic imaging, research and atypical MR settings (e.g., linear accelerator MR, interventional MR) and encompass information for patients, research participants, and healthcare personnel.

“The intent of the revised manual is to addresses new challenges that face contemporary MR practices, while at the same time increasing readability and instructional value,” said Robert E. Watson, Jr., MD, PhD, professor of radiology at the Mayo Clinic and chair of the ACR Committee on MR Safety. “The committee reorganized the manual into chapter format, with more images and ‘key point’ boxes in an effort to enhance clarity.”

ACR seeks input and recommendations from all aspects of the MR community, including radiologists, medical physicists, technologists and other stakeholders.

The committee seeks comments related to several changes in the draft manual, including:

  • Updated MR Personnel training levels and associated level-specific elements of MR Safety training.
  • Updated MR Personnel staffing recommendations, including in routine, emergency and remote scanning scenarios.
  • Updated guidance on “full stop/final check” processes in routine and emergency/complex situations, with associated elements of final patient/subject preparation.
  • Expanded and updated information related to objects, equipment and implanted devices; recommendations to help minimize projectile risk with use of pocketless attire for MR personnel and tethering of external equipment in Zone III/Zone IV.
  • New MR Risk Assessment Appendix as it pertains to management of patients with implanted devices with unclear MR conditions for safe scanning.
  • New extensive checklist of elements to consider in site MR Safety policies and standard operating procedures patterned on the ACR MR safety checklist required for ACR MR accredited facilities.

The comment period ends April 14. All comments received by the deadline will be considered.