According to Medtronic, 30 million people get an MRI each year which means it’s highly likely that you may need an MRI scan at some point in your life. It’s important to stay updated and have a firm grasp on MRIs which is why we created a blog to explain some of the frequently asked questions about these seemingly popular scans. After all, it’s never too soon to be prepared or simply informed about commonplace procedures.
What is an MRI?
Magnetic resonance imaging is a test that uses a magnetic field to create a photo of organs and different structures in your body. In order to receive an MRI, you have to lay or stand (depending on the machine) in a machine and stay still for the duration of the scan. It is a painless, non-intrusive process that can take anywhere from 10 minutes up to 2 hours.
Are there different machines?
There are several types of MRI machines that you can choose between depending on your center’s availability and the area needed to be examined. High-Field Open MRI is open on both sides which is perfect for anyone with anxiety, claustrophobia, broad shoulders, etc. The Open Upright MRI has a completely open front which is great for those that either does not wish to lay down or their weight restricts them from a traditional MRI scanner. The High-Field Wide-Bore MRI is wider than a traditional scanner and scans are completed faster than others which are perfect for those worried about spending a lengthy amount of time inside the machine.
What are common reasons to get an MRI?
If a problem is found during an x-ray, ultrasound, or CT scan, an MRI can be called into play because an MRI can provide further information that other images cannot provide. An MRI provides a detailed picture of the surroundings of bone tissue, which is helpful for questions related to the brain, spinal cord, lungs, chest, pelvis, ligaments, cartilage, discs, etc. According to Spine-health, they are even useful to rule out infection or tumor, differentiate scar tissue from recurrent disc herniation, and to rule out the risk of injecting a steroid into a tumor or infection.
All of us at BICRAD want to ensure that you’re able to get the facts straight before coming to your appointment. We understand that MRIs can seem scary or even confusing if you haven’t learned the basics, which is the last thing you want when dealing with your upcoming medical appointment. Everyone feels comforted when the facts are clearly stated and there is no confusion. If you or someone you know is in need of an MRI, contact us! We would love to help and make sure your experience is a positive one!