The private Leeds Upright MRI Centre, which is open to patients via a referral from a healthcare professional, will provide an alternative to the conventional `tunnel’ MRI scan, which is barred to obese patients and can cause anxiety and claustrophobia.
The five-figure brief is initially to support the launch in the clinic through a media relations campaign targeted at regional and national print, digital and broadcast media including consumer interest.
The upright open scanner is only one of five in the world and the second to be launched in the UK after United Open MRI opened a centre in London in 2007.
According to Tarquin Desoutter, CEO of United Open MRI, it works by scanning all parts of the body, particularly the spine and joints, when the patient is in a weight-bearing state, enabling the device to show the effect of gravity on the spine.
He added: `Conventional MRI scans take place in a tunnel. Some patients find the experience unpleasant, while those who suffer from claustrophobia or anxiety, or are obese, cannot undertake the procedure.’
There are approximately two million MRI examinations in the UK each year.