The magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a safe, painless, and non-invasive procedure that helps physicians detect certain medical conditions by looking at the highly accurate images of the body. Our MRI test accommodates a wide variety of body types comfortably. Each patient can lie down on a cushion table that slides easily into the MRI scanner, and our machine monitors the internal body structures at all times. Our modern MRI machines produce high resolution images for better results.
The presence of metal in or on your body is a safety hazard for an MRI exam. There are certain medical conditions that may prevent you from having an MRI exam.
You will be asked a series of medical history questions to determine whether you may proceed with the exam.
You will be asked to remove all metal or electronic objects from your body before the exam. These objects interfere with the magnetic field and can be very dangerous if taken into the exam room.
If you have ever had metal in your eyes you may need to have an X-ray of your head prior to undergoing an MRI.
Tell your technologist at the time of your exam if you have any metal or electronic devices in or on your body including, but not limited to:
Tell your technologist and your doctor if you are pregnant or suspect you may be pregnant. Your doctor may postpone the exam or choose an alternative exam.
No preparation is necessary prior to your exam.
Some patients may feel anxious due to the confining nature of the MRI scanner. If you feel this way, talk to your doctor. He or she may feel it necessary to prescribe a sedative prior to your exam to help you relax.
Your doctor or radiologist may request that your MRI scan be enhanced via the use of contrast material. If contrast is required, the technologist will start an intravenous (IV) line in your hand or arm to administer the contrast.
Although rare, there is a slight risk of an allergic reaction to contrast material. Therefore, you will be asked a series of questions about your medical history to determine whether you may receive contrast.
Most reactions are minor such as itchiness, hives, and nausea or vomiting. In very rare instances, an allergic reaction may cause swelling in your throat or other areas of your body. Tell your technologist or doctor immediately if you experience any of these symptoms during or after your exam.
Dont be Surprised!
The exam is painless and on average takes between 30 to 45 minutes, excluding preparation time. The amount of time varies depending on the type and number of exams for which you are scheduled.
During the exam, you will be asked to lie on a movable table. A coil or small antenna-like device may be placed over the body part to be examined. Once you have been positioned the technologist will move the table into the MRI scanner which is a long tubular shaped machine.
During the MRI scan, the magnet produces repetitive thumping and tapping sounds. You will be given earplugs to help block the noise of the scanner. You will also have the option of listening to music of your choice.
The technologist monitors you throughout the procedure. A microphone system enables you to communicate with the technologist at all times. You will also be given a device that will allow you to alert the technologist if you are having any difficulty during the procedure.
We Will Take Care of The Rest!
When your exam is complete you may leave and resume regular activities. If a sedative is administered for your exam you will need to arrange transportation home.
A radiologist will review your exam images and report the findings to your doctor within 24 hours. Your doctor will then discuss the findings and next steps with you.
Whats the Difference?
There are several reasons to have your MRI exam performed in a “high-field” MRI system.
The term “high-field” refers to a magnetic field strength that is 1.0 Tesla or greater. The detail and resolution available in an image is directly related to the strength of the magnetic field. Simply put the higher the magnetic field strength, the more details we can see inside the body.
Images are actually created by a radio wave that enters the body and then is released by the tissues as a similar radio signal. When the magnetic field is high enough, the separation between the different tissues is greater, thus giving radio signals that are more defined and more detailed. This separation allows for much greater resolution of small body parts, such as the internal auditory canals, cranial nerves, rotator cuff and tendon sheaths. The simple truth is that high-field magnets produce much sharper and detailed images than an open unit.
Another advantage for using high-field MRI is that scan times are drastically reduced. High-field exams are produced in about half the time of open units in comparable tests. The benefit to patients is obvious in that their test is done in about half the time. However, there are other benefits to shorter scan times. Patient motion is the greatest contributing factor to image degradation in MRI and there are some body functions which cannot be stopped, such as the heartbeat and abdominal peristalsis.
Also, in order to use MRI effectively, the patient must be fit with an antenna, or radio receiver, called a coil. Both high-field and low-field MRI must have coils in order to function properly and what you will find is that the coils are basically the same for both types of machines. So if a patient is claustrophobic inside a coil on the high-field machine, they are likely to be just as claustrophobic in the low-field coils as well. Remember that the scan times are halved in the high-field machine, so the patient is subject to the claustrophobic feeling for a much shorter time, while getting a far superior scan.