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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

What is an MRI?

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) utilizes magnetic and radio waves to produce high resolution and/or three-dimensional pictures of your internal organs and tissues. In an MRI, the alignment of hydrogen atoms in your body with a magnetic field generates signals that then produce cross-sectional images. These images are then helpful in diagnosing and detecting a variety of conditions, especially of the brain and spinal cord.

What to Expect During an MRI

During an MRI, you will be positioned on a motorized table that will move slowly into a long tube. While you are in the tube, a magnetic field will be generated around your body.  You will not sense the field but you may hear thuds, thumps, or tapping noises. Earplugs or music via headset may be provided should this noise bother you.

An MRI may take an hour or more and in the course of this test, you will be able to speak with a technician in a separate room. If you anticipate feeling claustrophobic during your MRI, consult your physician about possible medications that you may take ahead of time to ease this discomfort.

Uses of MRI Imaging

MRI are often used to diagnose:

  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Stroke
  • Aneurysms
  • Eye and inner ear disorders
  • Tumors

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