Erith family benefit from children’s rocket MRI simulator in UK first

PUBLISHED: 10:00 31 March 2018

Lewis, 8, with play specialist Miriam Kearley and the Playful MRI Simulator. Picture: Evelina London Children’s Hospital

Lewis, 8, with play specialist Miriam Kearley and the Playful MRI Simulator. Picture: Evelina London Children’s Hospital


A family from Erith were among the many to benefit from the UK’s first rocket MRI simulator, which landed at Evelina London Children’s Hospital to help young patients overcome their fears about having a real scan.

The rocket MRI simulator. Picture: Evelina London Children’s HospitalThe rocket MRI simulator. Picture: Evelina London Children’s Hospital

Although a painless procedure, MRI scans require the patient to lie absolutely still in a confined space for between 20 to 90 minutes.

Lewis Lancashire, eight, was one of the first children to experience the rocket simulator.

His grandmother Vicki Lancashire said: “Lewis was scared of the idea of needing an MRI, but after practicing with the simulator he was much calmer when going through the real scan.

“The team at Evelina London did a great job at guiding him through exactly what he could expect, and we are really pleased that he didn’t need an anaesthetic to undergo the scan.”

The simulator is a UK first. Picture: Evelina London Children’s HospitalThe simulator is a UK first. Picture: Evelina London Children’s Hospital

Last year, around 3,000 children had an MRI scan at Evelina London, with around 2,500 of these young patients requiring a general anaesthetic.

Thanks to the new equipment, known as the Playful MRI Simulator, and with the help of play specialists preparing children beforehand, there has been a notable reduction in the amount of young patients needing a general anaesthetic.

Children can watch a film while lying inside the machine and are recorded by the simulator.

Motion sensors register any movement made during the practice session and the results are discussed with the child, their parents and the play specialist.

Tracy Moon, senior paediatric MRI radiographer at Evelina London, said: “The MRI simulator has been great for patients at Evelina London.

“It helps us explain to children what will happen during their real scan so they can feel in control and prepared.

“Encouraging children to have scans while awake avoids the small risks associated with a general anaesthetic, reduces anxiety and means the patient can go straight home afterwards.”

Evelina London is the first UK hospital – and 16th in the world – to install the innovative simulator, which is a smaller version of an MRI scanner.

Aimed at children up to 10 years old, the simulator has helped 19 young patients avoid having an anaesthetic within the first month of being used.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Bexley Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Bexley Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Bexley Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Bexley news

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Since Bexley Council launched its anti-litter campaign earlier this year, 1,000 Bexley residents have now made the commitment to pick up at least one piece of plastic litter a week.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Our reporter Liam Coleman met with the big man before a hectic few weeks.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Crossrail, London’s new east to west railway service, may be delayed even further and could require a £2billion funding boost, Transport for London (TfL) has confirmed.

Monday, December 10, 2018

A faulty filtation system in a fish tank is believed to have caused a fire at a care home in Thamesmead on Sunday (December 9).

Friday, December 7, 2018

Rail travellers are now benefiting from recently completed work to improve access to Erith Station and to enhance the forecourt and station building.

A Bexley man who was suspected in the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence has admitted being a kingpin in a £4 million drugs plot.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

A burglar who stole three cars from homes in Dartford and Bexley has been sentenced to four years imprisonment.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Officers have made a number of arrests this morning (Thursday, December 6), including in areas of Bexley and Bromley as part of an investigation into violent disorder which occurred on August 25 in the Hounslow area.

Most read news

Digital Edition

Read the Bexley Times e-edition today

Newsletter Sign Up

Bexley Times twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24