Magnetic Resonance Imaging

As a regional leader in diagnostic imaging, we specialize in
techniques that detect and diagnose a variety of conditions.

You can be certain that we'll provide you and your physician with:

  • The safest and most advanced technology
  • A comfortable, relaxed and caring atmosphere
  • Expert medical consultation

Neuroradiology Physician Team



Accredited Facility

How it Works
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a simple, painless examination that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to "see" internal organs and soft tissue without the use of x-rays. Both safe and painless, MRI has no known side effects. Imagine being able to look through a hard substance in order so see what's beyond; that's what MRI allows your physician to do. MRI combines the speed and accuracy of a computer with safe magnetic and radio waves to create extremely detailed images of areas of your body. The strong magnetic field created by the MRI machine is used to prepare the body to emit radio "signals." Abnormal cells produce signals different from normal cells and can be identified when the final image is developed.

During an x-ray examination, bone often blocks the view of underlying soft tissue. Computed Tomography (CT) images both bone and soft tissue together. Standard x-rays and CT are very useful techniques, but some situations require the greater imaging capability of MRI.

What to Expect
Although MRI is the result of extremely complex technology, it's simple and easy for the patients.

Eating and Drinking
Under most circumstances, no special diet, medication or fasting is required before your MRI examination. Just eat and drink normally the day of your exam. And since there are no side effects, you needn't change your usual habits, you can even drive yourself to and from the exam.

If you are having the following exams, you will need to follow preparation instructions. These exams typically use contrast.

 

MR Hip Arthrogram

Preparation:
Please discontinue any blood thinners (aspirin, coumadin, plavix, pradaxa, etc) for 48 hours prior to arthrogram.

 

MRI of the Abdomen

Preparation:
Nothing by mouth 4 hours prior to exam.

 

MRI of the Abdomen w/ Pelvis

Preparation:
Arrive 1 hour before scan time and have no food or drink for 4 hours prior.

 

MRI of the Liver

Preparation:
Nothing by mouth 4 hours prior to exam.

 

On occasion, patients will require or prefer sedation for their exams. This will influence preparation prior to the MRI. If you have questions about sedation, please contact your physician or the MRI Center.

Getting ready
Since MRI exams use a magnet, the results can be altered by the presence of metal in the exam room. You'll be asked to leave any jewelry, keys and other metallic items in a locked safe. Credit cards have a metallic strip that can be altered by the magnet, and shouldn't be exposed to the exam room.

The metal used in zippers and snaps also interferes with the magnet's work. You'll probably be asked to wear an examining gown to prevent this. Be sure to use the bathroom, if necessary, prior to the exam so you'll be most comfortable for the duration of the procedure.

A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE
You cannot be examined by MRI if you have a pacemaker, inner ear implants, blood vessel surgical clips in the brain, or some metal implants. Please notify the physician or technologist if you have any of the above, or are uncertain whether you do.

Please make child care arrangements or bring a family member to watch children while you are having your MRI. Children cannot be left unattended in the lobby.

The Exam
Your MRI exam will be given in a special room designed to prevent outside radio waves from interfering with the test. Because the test is harmless, family members may be in the room with you during the test. Specially trained staff will observe you and can communicate with you through an intercom system in the machine.

During an MRI examination, you may here a variety of noises. Please click on the following file to hear sample sounds.
Gradient Noise.wmv

You only need to relax and try to remain as still as possible during the entire exam. Most people find the specially designed examination table extremely comfortable. You will feel nothing unusual during the exam. Depending on the type of exam, you may be aware of thumping-type sounds. These sounds are normal, and in no way harmful.

The exam usually takes from 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the sort of information your physician has requested.

About Your Results
MRI can help your physician diagnose a variety of conditions with great speed and safety.

You may leave immediately following the exam. A MRI physician (radiologist) will interpret your study and notify your physician of the results.

If you have any questions regarding the exam or our payment policy, please call our office at 425.656.5550 or to your scheduled appointment.

 
 Back to Imaging Services