Template for MR Visualization and Needle Targeting

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Annals of Biomedical Engineering








3D-printed template; MRI-guided procedure; MRI-visible


© 2018, Biomedical Engineering Society. To improve the targeting accuracy and reduce procedure time in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-guided procedures, a 3D-printed flexible template was developed. The template was printed using flexible photopolymer resin FLFLGR02 in Form 2 printer ® (Formlabs, Inc., Somerville, MA). The flexible material gives the template a unique advantage by allowing it to make close contact with human skin and provide accurate insertion with the help of the newly developed OncoNav software. At the back of the template, there is a grid comprised of circular containers filled with contrast agent. At the front of the template, the guide holes between the containers provide space and angular flexibility for needle insertion. MRI scans are initially used to identify tumor position as well as the template location. The OncoNav software then pre-selects a best guide hole for targeting a specific lesion and suggests insertion depth for the physician A phantom study of 13 insertions in a CT scanner was carried out for assessing needle placement accuracy. The mean total distance error between planned and actual insertion is 2.7 mm, the maximum error was 4.78 mm and standard deviation was 1.1 mm. The accuracy of the OncoNav-assisted and template-guided needle targeting is comparable to the robot-assisted procedure. The proposed template is a low-cost, quickly-deployable and disposable medical device. The presented technology will be further evaluated in prostate cancer patients to quantify its accuracy in needle biopsy.

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