(click on procedure name for more details):
* The ultrasound-guided liver biopsy video was produced by freehivinfo. The ultrasound-guided thyroid biopsy video was produced by SouthSound Radiology. Northwest Community Healthcare does not have affiliations with these organizations.
What is an MRI scan?
MRI is an abbreviation for magnetic resonance imaging. This is an imaging examination that aids physicians in diagnosis and treating medical conditions. In contrast to more common imaging procedures such as X-Rays of CT scans that uses ionizing radiation, MRI uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to make images of the body. This allows for very detailed pictures of the bones, internal organs, and soft tissues of the body. MRI is widely used to diagnose sports-related injuries, especially those affecting the knee, shoulder, hip, elbow, and wrist. The images allow the physician to see even very small tears and injuries to ligaments and muscles.
How it is performed
Patients are positioned on a moveable exam table. Sometimes a coil might be placed on the portion of the body that is being examined. The exam table will then be moved into the MRI machine. The MRI technologist will go to an adjacent room where they can perform the tests while watching the patient through window. The patient and technologist will be able to communicate through a sound system at anytime.
Depending on the examination, a contrast agent might be necessary. If the patient’s particular procedure requires intravenous contrast, then the MRI technologist will insert an intravenous catheter into a vein in the hand or arm. Some particular orthopedic examinations require contrast to be placed into the joint. This is usually performed by the radiologist prior to the examination. While examination is being performed you’ll hear some humming and thumping sounds.
Once the exam is completed the technologist may ask the patient to wait while they check the images and determine if any additional pictures are required.
How to prepare
Patients should wear comfortable clothes that are easy to change as they may be asked to wear a gown for their procedure. You will also be asked to remove any jewelry, eyeglasses or metal objects.