Magnetic Resonance imaging is a radiology technique designed to scan the human body to obtain diagnostic information. MRI uses magnetic fields, radio waves and sophisticated computers to generate two-or three-dimensional images of the inner parts of the body non-invasively.
MRI allows us to evaluate body structures that may not be as visible with other diagnostic imaging methods. It is a valuable tool for the diagnosis of a broad range of conditions including:
- Cancer and functional disorders: Organs of the chest and abdomen such as the liver, lungs, kidney and other abdominal organs can be examined in great detail to detect tumors and other functional disorders. Since there is no radiation exposure involved, MRI is often used for examination of the male and female reproductive systems.
- Joint and musculoskeletal disorders: MRI is often used to evaluate the knee, ankle, foot, shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand. It is a highly accurate method for evaluating soft tissue structures in great detail, such as tendons and ligaments. In addition, MRI is used for the diagnosis of spinal problems including disc herniation, spinal stenosis, and spinal tumors.
- Stroke: This test provides very accurate pictures of the brain and the blood vessels and arteries that supply the brain and can usually determine if, when and where in the brain a stroke occurred. It can also detect changes that occur in the brain after a stroke.
- Vascular disease: MRI of the heart, pelvis and legs can detect how well blood flows to and through the heart and any damage to the heart’s structure.
Mid Rogue Imaging Center uses the General Electric Signa HD 1.5T system.
How should I prepare for my MRI exam?
No special preparation is needed. You can eat normally and take your regular medication. You can wear any loose fitting, comfortable clothing as long as it has NO metal buttons, zippers or applique. Items such as scrubs, pajamas, and sweats are usually suitable, and cotton gowns are provided if necessary.
Since all metallic objects have potential harmful effects in a magnetic field, check with your physician or our MRI technologist if you have any of the following:
- Prosthetic joints – hip, knee, shoulder, ankle
- Pacemaker or artificial heart valve, defibrillator
- Surgical staples (metal plates, pins, screws)
- Ear implants
- Aneurysm clip(s)
- Implanted drug infusion devices
- Worked as a welder or grinder of metal and possibly have retained metal fragments in your eyes
What if I am pregnant?
If you are pregnant, or aren’t certain, please notify the imaging staff immediately. Although no studies have been performed to prove MRI is harmful for the developing child, Mid Rogue’s policy is that no patients may be subjected to an MRI or CT scan while they are pregnant. Patients who are pregnant or suspected of being pregnant will be referred back to their physician to determine if other imaging studies may be performed in lieu of MRI/CT.
What if I am claustrophobic?
If you know or suspect you have anxiety related to being in enclosed spaces, we recommend that you contact your physician and request an oral sedative for the procedure. This should be taken an hour before your examination. In that case, you must have someone drive you to and from your appointment.
Mid Rogue Imaging Center prides itself on having a very low failed exam rate due to anxiety issues, this is accomplished by taking time to explain the examination process to the patient, as well as ensuring the patient that they will be attended to at all times during their procedure.
What happens during this procedure?
- Depending on how many images are needed, the exam generally takes 15 – 45 minutes.
- You will be asked to remain still during the actual imaging process.
- Depending on the part of the body being examined, a contrast material may be administered intravenously to enhance the visibility of certain processes.
- You will hear a loud tapping or thumping during the exam. Earplugs or earphones are provided to you.
- You may feel warmth in the area being examined. This is perfectly normal.
- If a contrast injection is needed, you may feel a cool sensation at the site during the injection.
What happens after the examination?
After your examination your images will be stored in our Infinitt PACS system. The radiologists will review and interpret your study, and send the report to your physicians’ office. Your findings will be reported to your physician the same day of your examination. Should there be any findings requiring immediate treatment, our radiologists will call your physician in person to make them aware of your condition.
We do not provide test results to you until after the report has been sent your physicians’ office.