MRI-guided and CT-guided cervical nerve root infiltration therapy: a cost comparison

Maurer, Martin; Froeling, V; Röttgen, R; Bretschneider, T; Hartwig, T; Disch, A C; de Bucourt, M; Hamm, B; Streitparth, F (2014). MRI-guided and CT-guided cervical nerve root infiltration therapy: a cost comparison. RöFo. Fortschritte auf dem Gebiet der Röntgenstrahlen und der bildgebenden Verfahren, 186(6), pp. 559-566. Thieme 10.1055/s-0033-1356169

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PURPOSE To evaluate and compare the costs of MRI-guided and CT-guided cervical nerve root infiltration for the minimally invasive treatment of radicular neck pain. MATERIALS AND METHODS Between September 2009 and April 2012, 22 patients (9 men, 13 women; mean age: 48.2 years) underwent MRI-guided (1.0 Tesla, Panorama HFO, Philips) single-site periradicular cervical nerve root infiltration with 40 mg triamcinolone acetonide. A further 64 patients (34 men, 30 women; mean age: 50.3 years) were treated under CT fluoroscopic guidance (Somatom Definition 64, Siemens). The mean overall costs were calculated as the sum of the prorated costs of equipment use (purchase, depreciation, maintenance, and energy costs), personnel costs and expenditure for disposables that were identified for MRI- and CT-guided procedures. Additionally, the cost of ultrasound guidance was calculated. RESULTS The mean intervention time was 24.9 min. (range: 12 - 36 min.) for MRI-guided infiltration and 19.7 min. (range: 5 - 54 min.) for CT-guided infiltration. The average total costs per patient were EUR 240 for MRI-guided interventions and EUR 124 for CT-guided interventions. These were (MRI/CT guidance) EUR 150/60 for equipment use, EUR 46/40 for personnel, and EUR 44/25 for disposables. The mean overall cost of ultrasound guidance was EUR 76. CONCLUSION Cervical nerve root infiltration using MRI guidance is still about twice as expensive as infiltration using CT guidance. However, since it does not involve radiation exposure for patients and personnel, MRI-guided nerve root infiltration may become a promising alternative to the CT-guided procedure, especially since a further price decrease is expected for MRI devices and MR-compatible disposables. In contrast, ultrasound remains the less expensive method for nerve root infiltration guidance.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Radiology, Neuroradiology and Nuclear Medicine (DRNN) > Institute of Diagnostic, Interventional and Paediatric Radiology

UniBE Contributor:

Maurer, Martin


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Aisha Stefania Mzinga

Date Deposited:

07 Apr 2015 10:02

Last Modified:

01 Jul 2015 02:30

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PubMed ID:





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