WHAT IS MRI?
Magnetic Resonance Imaging, commonly known as MRI, uses a powerful magnetic field and radio waves to produce images of the body.
BEFORE THE TEST
Please be aware that correct preparation is very important for the test to be performed properly. Talk to your doctor about:
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Any allergy to iodine contrast.
- If you have any known kidney problems.
- If you have any known metal/implants/ prosthesis in your body such as a Pacemaker, Brain aneurysm clip cochlear implant, artificial heart valves, insulin pumps and others.
- If you have a history of claustrophobia (fear of closed areas)
- If you are unable to lie flat for up to 30 minutes.
- Please leave your valuables at home including jewelry, to prevent it from being lost or stolen for you have to remove them prior to entering the scan room.
- Let us know if you need interpreting services and we will arrange it for you.
- If you have claustrophobia, your doctor may prescribe an oral medication for you to take with you for your MRI appointment. In that case, bering someone with you to drive you home after the exam.
WHAT TO EXPECT ON THE DAY OF YOUR MRI EXAM?
- There is little preparation for an MRI exam. Take your daily medications as you normally do.
- Please arrive at least 30 minutes prior to your exam to ensure you are checked in on time.
- You will be asked to change into a hospital gown. You will also be asked to remove your watch/jewelry/ hair pins. All metal objects will have to be removed prior to stepping into the MRI room. A locker will be supplied to secure your belongings.
- The technologist will verify your identification prior to the exam.
- If you are instructed to drink a special solution (“oral contrast”) to prepare for your scan (for small bowel MRI only), you will receive the 1 liter solution and instructions from the technologist. This will be done over 30 minutes.
- Depending on the type of scan you need, a contrast material might be injected intravenously (into your blood stream) during the scan. This is necessary for some types of MRI scans to give better quality pictures. You will have to have an Intravenous (IV) cannula inserted in your arm prior to your test by a nurse.. This may be uncomfortable.
WHAT TO EXPECT DURING THE MRI SCAN?
- Allow up to one hour for your MRI scan. Most scans take from 30 to 45 minutes; however some may take more time up to 1-2 hours if there is multiple scans. Scanning time can vary from patient to patient.
- The technologist will help you lie in the correct position on the examining table. The table will then automatically move into place for imaging.
- You will be required not to move still during the actual MRI scanning. It is very important that you lie as still as possible during the entire procedure, as movement will blur the images. Depending on the body part that is being examined, you may be instructed to hold your breath for up to 30 seconds.
- The scanner is permanently open on both ends. It is well lit and there is a fan for patient comfort. The part of the body being scanned will be placed in the middle of the scanner.
- During the imaging, you will hear a loud intermittent banging noise. You will be provided with head phones to minimize the noise during the procedure.
- You will be provided with an emergency bell to alert the technologist of any discomfort you may experience or the need for any assistance at any point during the MRI scan.
- Some MRI scans require an injection of intravenous MRI contrast. Inform the technologist if you experience any discomfort during the injection.
WHAT TO EXPECT AFTER THE MRI SCAN?
- If you received IV contrast dye, the IV cannula will be removed and you may receive special instructions regarding your medication. It is advised you increase your oral fluid intact for the remainder of the day, (such as 6 to 8 glasses of water).
- Allergic reaction from the IV contrast dye is extremely rare. If you experience symptoms such as rash, hives, or shortness of breath, you should notify the technologist immediately.. If you experience any of these symptoms after leaving the hospital, please attend to your nearest Emergency department.
- In cases where sedation is used you will be sent home once awake and alert under the supervision of responsible adult. You will not be permitted to drive home once receiving sedation
- Results are reported on-site by Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi Radiologist within 24 hours of the test and the full report will be sent directly to your doctor. Please ensure you have a follow up appointment with your attending doctor to discuss the results.
© Copyright 2023 Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi. All rights reserved.
This information is provided by Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, part of Mubadala Healthcare, and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.