Open MRIs for Claustrophobic Patients

Open MRIs for Claustrophobic Patients

In general, MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is a medical imaging examination where a strong magnetic field is used in conjunction with radio waves in order to get detailed information about the tissues and organs in your body. In an MRI, radiation or x-rays are not used. Normal MRI’s often look similar to a cylinder that covers the entire body and while the scan is taking place a patient may hear loud noises.

Open MRIs are normally used in order to help make space for claustrophobic, pediatric, and obese patients. It would be open either on 2 or 3 sides. In an open MRI you have a more relaxed and less confined environment. The noise levels of Open MRI’s are on the lower side as well and altogether this is a lot less stressful environment for patients.

Preparing for an Open MRI

You should follow all the instructions that your healthcare provider has given you. An MRI is a process where radio waves and a strong magnetic field are used in order to get detailed internal pictures of you body. Due to this there are detailed metal safety checklists, as metallic implants or objects taken inside an MRI can be dangerous.

Make sure that they do not have any metal fasteners on them such as zippers, snaps, and buttons. You should also let the authorities at the facility where you would get your MRI done know if you have a glucose monitor or an insulin pump. The imaging devices may lead to these devices not functioning the way that they should.

How long will the exam take?

These exams normally take between 15 and 20 minutes.

What happens during these exams?

At first you may be asked to change to a robe or gown. This depends on the kind of MRI exam that would be done on you. You would also have to remove the following:

  • jewellery
  • watches
  • hair clips
  • piercings
  • dentures

In short, you would have to leave all items that contain metal such as your cards that come with magnetic strips. They can be stored in lockers outside the room where the MRI would be done. The MRI scanners are usually operated by radiologists or radiographers who are highly trained to conduct and interpret MRI results.


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