How Can I Prepare for an MRI?

An MRI scan combines strong magnetic fields with radio waves in order to create images of the inside of a person’s body. This magnetic resonance imaging scan only lasts 15 to 90 minutes in total. The length of time it takes to complete an MRI is dependent on the individual’s procedure. Factors such as the number of required images needed and the overall size of the area will contribute to the time period.

How Can I Prepare for an MRI

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The first MRI scan had to go through a lengthy clinical trial where a Clinical-Project-Management team from places such as were required to examine and test the device to ensure its effectiveness and safety, prior to human use. The actual MRI itself is actually a type of large tube. At first, it may look quite daunting, but it is not as intimidating as it seems – trust us.

What Happens Before the MRI?

Before an MRI, your doctor will inform you of any dietary restrictions or medication requirements you may require. However, it is unlikely there will be many limitations at all but if you have any concerns it is best to ask your doctor for their advice. On the day of your exam, you will be asked to fill out an MRI screening form.

You may need to change into a hospital gown if the clothes you are wearing include metal fasteners or some kind of metallic design. You will also be asked to remove any of the following:

  • Hairpins
  • Watches
  • Wigs
  • Dentures
  • Jewellery
  • Glasses
  • Hearing aids
  • Underwire bras
  • Piercings

What Happens During the MRI?

During the MRI scan, you will have to lie still. On both ends of the scan, there is a magnet which creates strong magnetic field. This is why you cannot have any metal objects on your person during the scan. A two-way intercom between the patient and technologist will allow you to voice any concerns you may have during the procedure. Whichever part of your body currently being scanned will be situated in the middle of the magnet. You may enter the scan feet or head first, dependent on the area of the body being scanned.

You will notice a loud noise like bangs. It is important to not panic, this is normal and you may even be provided with earplugs to minimise any stress the noises may cause you during the scan. An alarm button is available at the ready should you feel the need for assistance.