Resonance Imaging is a safe diagnostic imaging technique
which uses a magnetic field and radio waves
to produce pictures of your body. X-rays are not
used. The MRI scanner sends out radio signals to
atoms found in the water molecules in your body.
The hydrogen atoms then send back radio signals which
recorded by the MRI scanner. A computer then compiles
this information and produces cross-sectional images
of your body, very much like slices from a loaf of
bread. Doctors are able to see many of your body's
structures better on MRI than with other techniques.
The procedure provides excellent images of soft tissue
structures like the brain, spinal cord, muscle and
certain internal organs as well as joint anatomy.
Should I Expect?
The MRI exam can be one of the easiest and most
comfortable exams you experience. The technologist
will ask you to
lie on a cushioned table that will move into the
tube-shaped scanner after you have been comfortably
technologist will watch you through an observation
window and will be able to communicate with you
at all times.
The scanner makes tapping noises that change with
the various imaging sequences. Remaining still
noises is very important in order to obtain clear
scanning is complete, the technologist will return
to help you from the table. You may eat
unless other tests are scheduled. Your exam will
take about 30 to 60 minutes, after which you
will be able
to return to your normal activities.
How Should I Prepare?
Usually there are no special preparations or
diet instructions prior to your MRI exam. You
prescribed by your doctor unless informed otherwise.
You may be asked to change into a hospital
gown to eliminate the chance of artifacts from
clothing. Any metal
such as earrings, eyeglasses, or hairpins should
be removed. Women should also refrain from
wearing hairspray or makeup
and should always inform their technologist
if there is any possibility of pregnancy. You should
drinking coffee or other caffeinated beverages
prior to scanning so you are able to lie quietly
for the duration
of the exam.
inform your doctor or the technologist if you have
any of the following that may prevent
you from undergoing
an MRI exam:
of working with metal
of injury during military service
plate, pin, or other implant
Why do some MRI procedures require an injection
MRI scans are painless, but some exams
require an injection of a “contrast” agent
to make some abnormalities easier to see.
MRI contrast is an organically bound gadolinium
material that is extremely safe and typically
side effects. However, there is always
the potential for allergic reaction. Be
sure to tell your technologist
if you’ve had a reaction to MRI contrast
or if you are particularly sensitive to
Why does Lucien only offer a closed MRI?
With the utmost concern for patient health
and reporting accuracy, Lucien performs
in a “closed” unit
only. The level of imaging detail necessary
to provide the radiologist with the best
information for interpretation
is provided only by the closed MRI unit.
is only in the cases of extreme claustrophobia or
physical size complications, that
we recommend a patient
choose to have an “open” MRI
procedure. Our staff will recommend
locations for patients that
Do I Get the Results?
After your study is over, a radiologist
will review and evaluate your exam.
Both a preliminary
will be sent to your doctor, who
can then discuss the results with you in
situations, our radiologists will
speak directly with your referring physician
the result of the
any time before or after your procedure, our radiologists
one-on-one consultations with you.