Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

What is MRI?
MRI is painless technology used to see inside the body without using X-rays. It can produce 2- or 3-dimensional images using a large magnet, radio waves, and a computer. The magnetic fields MRI uses are not known to be harmful.

Where is the MRI center located?
The MRI center is located at Freeman West. If your room is located at Freeman East and your doctor orders an MRI, we will transfer you by ambulance to Freeman West.

What happens during an MRI?
When you arrive for your MRI, we will ask you to complete a medical history form. This form is very important and you should fill it out as completely and accurately as possible. The most important information you can give your technologist is knowledge of any metal located in your body. If you have ever had any type of device implanted in your body such as a pacemaker, neurostimulator (tens unit), ear implants, or any metal clips in the eyes, you must inform the technologist before the test. You will also need to inform them if you are pregnant.

Your MRI technologist will explain the exam that is about to take place. You will then be asked to sign a consent form stating that you understand the procedure. Hearing aids, nonpermanent dentures, glasses, watches, jewelry, and contents of your pockets will need to be removed.

Before the exam begins, the technologist will position you as comfortably as possible and give you earplugs or headphones. The exam table will slide into the magnet (a round tube) and may be fairly close to your face, depending on the type of exam being performed.

During the exam you will not feel anything, but will hear intermittent knocking noises that will vary in loudness and tone. Do not be alarmed by these noises; your technologist is monitoring the machine and your exam very closely. You will be given a buzzer in the event that you need to contact the technologist during your exam. The total examination time usually ranges from 40-90 minutes. Some MRI exams require that dye be injected into your IV. It is very important that you hold very still for your exam. If you feel you are unable to do this, please inform your doctor.