A Precise Picture
MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is one of the most advanced imaging techniques available.
MRI has become a preferred method by doctors for diagnosing potential problems in many different parts of the body. It is useful for examining soft tissue such as organs, as well as muscles, cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bones.
MRI is used primarily to evaluate the brain, spine and joints and is useful in diagnosing problems in the breasts, chest, abdomen and pelvis.
In addition to the ability to produce images of unparalleled quality, MRI also has a dynamic quality that permits imaging of flowing blood called an MR Angiogram (MRA). This allows doctors to evaluate arteries and veins without needing to place a catheter in the vessel.
At CRL Imaging, our team of professionals performs MRI scans to identify healthy and unhealthy tissue and to suggest appropriate treatments. This allows patients to heal with greater comfort, fewer complications, less risk and better results. A physician’s referral is required.
About the Procedure
MRIs are formed using two natural forces – magnetic fields and radio waves – to create a detailed, clear picture of your body that includes structures not visible with traditional x-rays. MRI exams are painless, and unlike x-rays and other imaging technologies, MRI does not use radiation.
Please arrive 15 minutes before your exam to complete a patient information and safety form.
Inform your referring doctor or the technologist if you have:
- Cardiac pacemaker
- An artificial heart valve or stent
- Metal plate, pin, or other metallic implant
- Cochlear implant or hearing aid
- Aneurysm clips
- Nicotine or other medication patches
- Previous gunshot wound
- Ever been a metal worker or have had metal in your eyes
- Possibility of a 1st trimester pregnancy
- Surgery on the area being scanned
- Weigh more than 400 pounds
Any metallic substance on your body can affect the quality of the diagnostic images. Some can also cause discomfort or injury to you when placed in the magnetic field.
You will need to remove your watch, eyeglasses, jewelry, hearing aids and any other metallic objects you may be carrying, including non-permanent dentures.
Unless you are instructed by our scheduling staff to retrain from eating or drinking before the exam, there are no restrictions on food.
If you are claustrophobic and need Valium, please discuss this with your doctor in advance. You will need someone to drive you home after the procedure.
During the Exam
You will be asked to lie down on a table that glides you into the magnet. You will hear sounds similar to a drumbeat as pictures of your body are formed. You will be asked to lie very still during the exam. You will be told ahead of time how long your scan is expected to take. At all times, a technologist will be in contact with you through an intercom system as well as visually. Your doctor may request that you receive an injection of a contrast agent to give a better picture of the area being examined. This will require the technologist to start an IV in your arm or hand.
Certain exams may require you to hold your breath. The technologist will inform you if this is necessary.
After The Procedure
After the procedure you may return to normal diet and activities. If you are given oral or IV contrast, you may be instructed to drink extra water that day.
A board-certified Radiologist from CRL Imaging will interpret the scan and provide a written report of the information to your referring physician within 24 hours.
Any finding requiring immediate attention will be called to the referring physician the day of the exam.