Magnetic Resonance Imaging
The GE 1.5 Tesla MRI scanner is continually upgraded to keep up with advances in technology. This scanner is considered the industry standard and is valuable for imaging all parts of the body.. The High Field MRI scanner is used to view all parts of the body, site especially the internal organs, brain, spine, and joints. The scan takes about 20 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the area being viewed.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a noninvasive, usually painless medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions. MR imaging uses a powerful magnetic field, radio waves and a computer to produce detailed pictures of organs, soft tissues, bone and virtually all other internal body structures. The images can then be examined on a computer monitor or printed on film. MRI does not use ionizing radiation (x-rays).
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is MRI?
MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is a medical diagnostic imaging procedure used by doctors to peer inside the body in a non-invasive, harmless way. Unlike CT scans and X-rays, a MRI does not use radiation. Rather, it uses radio frequencies and magnetism to produce pictures for the radiologist to interpret. An MRI is very safe. There are no known health risks associated with the magnetic field or the radio waves used by the machine nor have any side effects been reported.
- Can anyone have a MRI exam?
Anyone who can lie flat and keep still for 45 minutes can have a MRI scan. Patients who have metal objects in their body must discuss with our staff whether a MRI exam is suitable. Most items put in surgically are safe for MRI examinations. The exceptions are implanted electronic devices like cardiac pacemakers, nerve stimulators, cochlear implants and certain types of aneurysm clips used in some types of brain surgery. No adverse effects have been found with MRI in pregnancy. However, we prefer not to scan women in the first trimester of their pregnancy unless the referring doctor feels it should not be delayed or a MRI replaces an x-ray test.
- Does Excel Diagnostics & Nuclear Oncology Center have an Open MRI Scanner?
No; we do not have an open MRI scanner. Open MRI systems generally have much lower magnetic strength and therefore resolutions of the images acquired by an open MRI are not as good as conventional MRI. However, if you are claustrophobic, we can provide sedation, which will relieve the anxiety and claustrophobia in majority of the patients.
- What will I experience?
A MRI is a non-invasive procedure. You will hear a loud “knocking” noise as the MRI scanner produces the images. You will be given ear plugs to minimize the noise and to make you more comfortable.
- Can I come to Excel Diagnostics & Nuclear Oncology Center if I’m claustrophobic?
Yes! For some MRI exams you may be placed in the scanner feet first, rather than head first. In these cases, your head may not even be inside the scanner. We have custom-made mirrored glasses for you to see outside the scanner during your exam. We can provide an oral sedative for you if necessary. Sedation will relieve the anxiety and claustrophobia in majority of the patients.
- How should I prepare for my MRI exam?
Our staff will instruct you as to whether or not your scan will involve contrast. Take your usual prescribed medicine. You should wear comfortable clothes that do not include any metal, like sweat pants. If that is not a convenient option, we will provide you with gown to change into in our private dressing rooms.
- What happens after the MRI scan?
Our on staff radiologist will interpret your MRI scan and write a report. The report will be faxed to your referring physician. Your referring physician will discuss the results with you.