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Information You Need When Going for an MRI

Before The MRI

An open MRI might sound like a procedure that you don't want to face, but it's really not that bad to think about. It's a scan that takes place while you lie on a table that moves so that you are inside a long tube. There is a large camera that circles around the body that takes digital images of the area that the doctor wants to see. Most of the time, an MRI is done of the head so that the doctor can see the brain or of the internal organs that an x-ray can't get a clear image of in order to determine what's wrong.

There are some ways that you can prepare for an MRI so that you aren't as nervous and so that the images are as clear as possible. When you go to the imaging center, you should wear comfortable clothing as you might have to change into a gown to prevent any clasps on the clothes or zippers from showing on the scan. Leave all jewelry at home because you won't be able to wear it in the scan. If you are pregnant or if there is a chance that you are, you need to tell the doctor or the technician. You also need to tell the technician if there are any tattoos or any metal components in the body as the magnet could pull at them.

It's best to get to the appointment about 30 minutes ahead of time. There is paperwork that will need to be completed. If the doctor has ordered any kind of contrast to be used to detect issues with the blood vessels or areas of the body, then you'll be given the contrast to drink. At times, you might need an IV to receive the contrast for the doctor to get a better look at what is going on in the body. It takes about 45 minutes to complete the scan. You'll be directed as to when to breathe and what to do by the technician. There will be a humming sound during the scan, but there is no pain involved through the procedure.

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