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What is an MRI Scan (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

Magnetic resonance is a safe and painless analysis in which a magnetic field and radio waves allow to obtain detailed images of the organs and structures of the body.

In magnetic resonance imaging, radiation is not used and this is one of the differences it has with computed tomography.

 

Why is magnetic resonance performed?

MRIs are tool to detect a variety of conditions, including brain, spinal cord, skeleton, chest, lung, abdomen, pelvis, wrists, hands, ankles, and other problems.
In some cases, it provides clear images of parts of the body that specialists cannot see so clearly with x-rays, computed tomographs or ultrasound.
This makes it an extremely valuable tool for diagnosing problems in the eyes, ears, heart and circulatory system.
The ability of magnetic resonance to highlight contrasts in soft tissues makes it very useful for deciphering problems in joints, cartilage, ligaments and tendons.
MRI can also be used to identify infections and inflammatory conditions, or to rule out problems such as tumors.

 

Procedure

Magnetic resonances usually last between 20 and 90 minutes, depending on the type of study. You must lie on a mobile stretcher while the technician places it in the correct position.

To detect specific problems, you may receive an intravenous contrast solution. This solution, which does not cause pain when entering the veins, allows highlighting some areas of the body, such as blood vessels, so that doctors see more details in specific areas. The contrast solution used in magnetic resonance imaging is safe and allergic reactions are very unusual. Before administering the contrast solution, the technician will ask you if you are allergic to any medication or food.
You will hear repetitive sounds coming from the machine. This is absolutely normal. You may receive earplugs to block noise. You will have a call button if you feel uncomfortable during the exam.
Once the study is finished, the technician will help you get off the couch.

 

 

Obtaining the results

A radiologist reads and interprets the records of the magnetic resonance imaging. The radiologist will send a report to the doctor, who will talk with you about the results and explain what they mean. In most cases, it is impossible to deliver the results directly to the patient or family at the time of the exam.

 

Risks

Magnetic resonances are safe and simple. The magnetic field or radio waves do not pose health risks, since low-energy radio waves do not use radiation. 
Allergic reactions to the contrast solution are very unusual, but technicians and other staff are prepared to handle these cases.

 

At the London Spine Unit, we have the most qualified healthcare team to perform magnetic resonances. Book an appointment to get a checkup.

 

You might also want to read: What is Lumbar Decompression Surgery?

 

Why is magnetic resonance performed?

MRIs are used to detect a variety of conditions, including brain, spinal cord, skeleton, chest, lung, abdomen, pelvis, wrists, hands, ankles, and other problems. In some cases, it provides clear images of parts of the body that cannot be seen so clearly with x-rays, computed tomographs or ultrasound. This makes it an extremely valuable tool for diagnosing problems in the eyes, ears, heart and circulatory system.

 

What is the magnetic resonance procedure?

Magnetic resonances usually last between 20 and 90 minutes, depending on the type of study being performed. You must lie on a mobile stretcher while the technician places it in the correct position. To detect specific problems, you may receive an intravenous contrast solution. This solution, which does not cause pain when entering the veins, allows highlighting some areas of the body, such as blood vessels, so that doctors see more details in specific areas. The contrast solution used in magnetic resonance imaging is safe and allergic reactions are very unusual. As the exam is done you will hear repetitive sounds coming from the machine. This is absolutely normal. You may receive earplugs to block noise.

 

What are the risks?

Magnetic resonances are safe and simple. The magnetic field or radio waves do not pose health risks, since low-energy radio waves do not use radiation. Allergic reactions to the contrast solution are very unusual, but technicians and other staff are prepared to handle these cases.

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