As you investigate the PET/CT market, you’re going to hear a good deal of name-dropping: manufacturers, models, variants and revisions of those models, and so on. Amidst all of that, the name “Siemens Biograph Duo” is likely to slip from a colleague’s lips or appear in pleasant blue letters somewhere on your Google results page.
Of course, you recognize the name “Siemens”. They’re a well-respected, multi-national corporation that specializes in a variety of products. But in the world of PET/CT, what makes their offering stand out? What are the traits of this “Biograph Duo”?
If only there was someone who could just give it to you straight… oh… hold up! Is that a product review of the Biograph Duo you see below the paragraph you’re currently reading? You bet your grandma’s prize-winning begonias it is!
Why the Biograph Duo?
A workhorse of the PET/CT modality, the Siemens Biograph Duo enjoys international popularity for a number of reasons. Chiefly, the unit offers relatively low operating costs due to the abundance of after-market replacement parts and qualified service engineers.
For those for whom facility space is a concern, the Duo, like its 6-slice brother, offers a smaller footprint than the 16-slice by virtue of its air-cooled gantry. The elimination of chiller space as a concern makes the system ideal for smaller imaging centers as well as mobile PET/CT installations.
In terms of hardware, almost all Biograph Duos feature Siemens’ well-regarded Lutetium Oxyorthosilicate (LSO) detectors. During the years of the Duo’s manufacture, this detector type was among the best available for PET/CT. Some early Duos feature the more common BGO detectors found in other makes of PET/CT. These are still quality detectors, but the superiority of the LSO caused Siemens to transition away from BGO as the Biograph line continued.
For sites interested in performing cardiac studies it should be noted that Duos manufactured from 2002 to mid-2004 could not be cardiac gated. This is one of the few drawbacks of the product, though the point is moot for non-cardiac specialties. Additionally, in the second half of 2004, the Duo’s LSO detectors were upgraded to hi-resolution. Systems made from then through 2005 had the option of cardiac gating, though few systems actually came off the line with the option installed. As far as this reviewer knows, there are no instances of cardiac gating being installed on a Biograph Duo as an after-market upgrade.
At the end of 2005, the Biograph Duo was discontinued and replaced by the Biograph 6. Every so often we see Duos marked with 2006 or newer labels, but these are refurbished units that were originally manufactured in the 2002-2005 date range. Fortunately, with the rise of refurbishment programs and the secondary imaging equipment market, these reliable systems can continue to offer end users a balance between quality and economy in spite of their discontinuation on the Siemens factory floor.
With any luck, by now you’ve discovered what all the name-dropping is about. The Siemens Biograph Duo is a PET/CT well worth considering as you peruse the modality market. If your interest is piqued, and you’d like to see a Duo face-to-face, Block Imaging has a Biograph Duo mobile in stock now. Please contact us to learn more about this great system.