MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. This test is non-invasive and does not expose you to any radiation.
During an MRI scan, many very thin 2-dimensional pictures are taken of the area if interest and assembled into 3-dimensional pictures by a computer. This allows the doctor to look layer by layer at the area being scanned and provides greater detail to aid in the diagnostic process.
An MRI may be used to evaluate blood flow, blood vessels, the cause of pain or swelling, lymph nodes, cancer, tumors, the cause of abnormal blood test results, joints, soft tissues, and much more.
What happens during an MRI?
You will be asked to lie down on a table that will move you in and out of a donut-shaped tube. The quality of the images will depend on how still the patient remains during the exam. For some MRI scans, contrast will be required. This is an injectable material that will highlight the area of interest.
There may be a loud sound coming from the tube, this is to be expected and all patients are given the option to use earplugs or headphones to listen to your choice of music. The exam will take anywhere from 20-40 minutes, but run longer if sedation or contrast is required.
You are able to return to your normal daily activities upon leaving.