MRI Patient Services

How does an MRI Operate and what should you expect?

The MR images are formed by the computer processing signals that are emitted by body tissue. These signals are generated using a safe magnetic field in combination with radio waves of a specific frequency. Different tissue characteristics are revealed through this process and translated into different contrast levels on the image.

The procedure typically will last anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes. During the imaging process you will hear a faint knocking sound. An intercom system is available to call the technologists in an instant. Our scan rooms are family friendly allowing a loved one to sit with you while undergoing the test. You can also listen to your favorite music while undergoing the exam.

The benefits of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are many, with new applications continually being developed through on-going research. The procedure is used for all parts of the body and is effective in the clinical evaluation of the following conditions: brain disorders, traumatic injuries, eye abnormalities, spine diseases, tumor detection, liver and other abdominal diseases, knee and shoulder injuries, musculoskeletal disorders, facial and neck abnormalities, infection, cardiac malformations, blood flow and vessel disorders.

What do you have to do to prepare for the MRI?

There is no special preparation required prior to the MRI exam. You may eat normally and continue to take any medication prescribed by your doctor unless otherwise directed.

Due to the possible interference of the magnetic field, you will be asked to leave the following items in a safe place outside the scan room: coins, credit cards, glasses, hair pins, hearing aids, jewelry, and other metal objects.

We will provide a hospital gown to wear to avoid magnetic interference from belt buckles and zippers. If you prefer to wear your own clothes during the test, please remember to wear loose fitting, comfortable clothes with no metal clasps, snaps or trim. You may also be asked to remove make up and dentures before undergoing the test.

Once you are on the table our technologist will inform you of the testing process and give you some basic instructions. The technologist will remind you to breathe normally and remain still during the MRI exam. Once the exam is over, the technologist will assist you out of the scan room.

You should check with your physician or MRI technologist if you have had any brain, ear, eye, or other surgeries or any of the following:

* Aneurysm clips
* Foreign metal objects in the eye
* Implanted drug infusion device
* Intrauterine device (IUD), etc.
* Metal implants
* Neuro-stimulator (Tens-units)
* Pacemaker
* Permanent eyeliner
* Surgical staples
* Shrapnel or bullet wounds

* If you are pregnant, please notify your physician and our technologist prior to your exam.