“My C-arm was quite an investment, so I treat it with kid gloves. With the care I take, it’ll never break down!” Yeah; and in a perfect world there’d be no taxes and dirty diapers would smell like roses.
It’s a hard fact that, until science can provide mankind with indestructible materials, equipment problems are an unfortunate eventuality. While the scientists get cracking on that one, we at Block Imaging thought we’d give you the next best thing: four of the most highly-reported C-arm maintenance problems and ways that you can help fix or prevent them.
1. My OEC 9600 C-arm has a grainy image!
This problem crosses our desks on a regular basis. Fortunately, as we’ve seen time and again, this is often a matter of calibration, not component failure. If you are experiencing a grainy image, break out your OEC 9600 Operator’s Manual, give yourself a quick refresher on using the “boost” mode, and place a call to your service provider. You can use the boost temporarily to continue serving patients until an engineer can get to your facility and double check your calibrations and the condition and cleanliness of your imaging chain. Image quality is also often affected by dust or lint particles in the II or CCD camera.
2. My OEC 9600/9800 is giving me a “Charger Fail” error!
95% of the time, this issue is not related to your charger board or your HV tank (phew!). More likely than not, your problem is that your main system batteries are approaching their end of life. Batteries like these are available at most battery stores. Removing the cover on the backside of the C-Arm will reveal the battery housing in the base of the frame. If you have a biomed on staff, it’s likely that they can handle this swap for you. Be sure to allow twenty four hours for the system to recharge after battery replacement.
3. My C-Arm system keeps glitching when I use the footswitch!
Our first suggestion is that you stop playing all that catchy smooth jazz in your OR because, more likely than not, you’re toe-tapping! Toe-tapping happens when the user is depressing the footswitch faster than the C-Arm computer can keep up. The best way to deal with this is to reboot your system and try again, but slower. Trust us, unless you’re operating in a hurricane, the anatomy you’re looking at will still be there a few seconds later.
4. My OEC 9600 is giving me a “Checksum” error!
Most of the time, this is an indication that your system has a bad SRAM card. This suggestion may seem like a cop-out in a “how-to” article, but it’s true: you’d be best served by contacting us to have a new SRAM card put in. Formatting and properly installing a new SRAM card can be pretty involved and requires some equipment that your site probably doesn’t have. Our parts department carries SRAM cards and our engineering network can get someone to your site with the right knowledge and equipment to clear the checksum error from the system.
Perpetuity’s a beautiful thing (and a cool-sounding word)
Hopefully you’ve never had a problem with your C-arm until now and in your hour of need this article had exactly the solution to restore your system to its former glory. If that’s not the case, you can contact us for C-arm care in perpetuity. Block Imaging offers multi-year C-arm service contracts, time and materials support, and a full array of replacement parts. At one time or another, our engineers have encountered all of these problems and hundreds more. If you need C-arm assistance, please contact us and get all that sweet experience on your side.
Written by Jordan Batterbee
Jordan Batterbee is the Content Manager at Block Imaging. He loves to research, write, and help others get clear, concise, and (hopefully) fun answers to their medical imaging questions.