Modeling of electrodes and implantable pulse generator cases for the analysis of implant tip heating under MR imaging
Purpose: The authors purpose is to model the case of an implantable pulse generator (IPG) and the electrode of an active implantable medical device using lumped circuit elements in order to analyze their effect on radio frequency induced tissue heating problem during a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) examination. Methods: In this study, IPG case and electrode are modeled with a voltage source and impedance. Values of these parameters are found using the modified transmission line method (MoTLiM) and the method of moments (MoM) simulations. Once the parameter values of an electrode/IPG case model are determined, they can be connected to any lead, and tip heating can be analyzed. To validate these models, both MoM simulations and MR experiments were used. The induced currents on the leads with the IPG case or electrode connections were solved using the proposed models and the MoTLiM. These results were compared with the MoM simulations. In addition, an electrode was connected to a lead via an inductor. The dissipated power on the electrode was calculated using the MoTLiM by changing the inductance and the results were compared with the specific absorption rate results that were obtained using MoM. Then, MRI experiments were conducted to test the IPG case and the electrode models. To test the IPG case, a bare lead was connected to the case and placed inside a uniform phantom. During a MRI scan, the temperature rise at the lead was measured by changing the lead length. The power at the lead tip for the same scenario was also calculated using the IPG case model and MoTLiM. Then, an electrode was connected to a lead via an inductor and placed inside a uniform phantom. During a MRI scan, the temperature rise at the electrode was measured by changing the inductance and compared with the dissipated power on the electrode resistance. Results: The induced currents on leads with the IPG case or electrode connection were solved for using the combination of the MoTLiM and the proposed lumped circuit models. These results were compared with those from the MoM simulations. The mean square error was less than 9%. During the MRI experiments, when the IPG case was introduced, the resonance lengths were calculated to have an error less than 13%. Also the change in tip temperature rise at resonance lengths was predicted with less than 4% error. For the electrode experiments, the value of the matching impedance was predicted with an error less than 1%. Conclusions: Electrical models for the IPG case and electrode are suggested, and the method is proposed to determine the parameter values. The concept of matching of the electrode to the lead is clarified using the defined electrode impedance and the lead Thevenin impedance. The effect of the IPG case and electrode on tip heating can be predicted using the proposed theory. With these models, understanding the tissue heating due to the implants becomes easier. Also, these models are beneficial for implant safety testers and designers. Using these models, worst case conditions can be determined and the corresponding implant test experiments can be planned.