Plan on checking in 30 minutes prior to your scan time. Most scans take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes to complete. Studies that require contrast will add an additional 15 to 20 minutes.
What should I bring with me to my appointment?
You should bring your insurance card; if it is an auto or workers comp claim please have your claim number, date of injury and your adjuster information. You will also need your photo ID, physicians order (if it was given to you), and your chosen form of payment if asked to bring one. If you have had a prior MRI of the area we are scanning we ask that you bring a copy of the CD and report so a comparison can be made.
What happens when my doctor orders my MRI with contrast?
If your physician orders your MRI with contrast you will be given an injection of Gadolinium (MRI contrast agent) into your bloodstream.
MRI contrast is different from CT contrast, it does not contain iodine like CT contrast does. As with all contrast agents there is a slight chance of an adverse reaction. With Dotarem, the type of Gadolinium we use, the chance of reaction is less than 1%. The most common reactions are headaches and/or nausea.
We ask that you drink more water than usual both before the MRI and after to help flush that contrast out of your system. The contrast will leave the bloodstream and will be excreted through your urine within 6 to 24 hours after the MRI. To make sure your kidneys are able to excrete the contrast blood work may be required within 6 weeks prior to your appointment. If any of the following applies to you, your physician may need to order a blood test:
You are 60 years old or older
You are diabetic
If you are breast feeding it is suggested that you store breast milk prior to your appointment and then pump and dump for 24 hours following the injection.
How should I dress for my MRI?
You should wear loose, comfortable clothing for your MRI. Try to refrain from wearing any type of metal as it may ruin the pictures or be a safety hazard. The following items should not go into the MRI room:
Hair clips or bobbie pins
Jewelry including watches
Don't worry if you don't have time to change prior to your appointment. We have scrubs available for our patients to wear, and we have a dressing room where you can lock up your jewelry and valuables. We also have MRI safe wheelchairs, canes and oxygen tanks if needed.
Are there any safety percautions I should be aware of?
Yes, there are some metallic items in your body that may be contraindicated, please inform the staff if you have any of the following prior to your appointment:
Nerve stimulator (Tens Unit)
Is there a weight limit?
Yes, the weight limit for our MRI machine is 500lbs.
Can I have an MRI if I am pregnant?
We normally do not do MRI's on pregnant women. If you require an MRI while pregnant, a special consult between our radiologist and your referring physician will be done to determine weather the MRI is medically necessary.
Will I really be watching TV while getting my MRI?
Yes! We have a 50" flat screen TV in the MRI room. We have Direct TV and you can choose your favorite channel to watch during your scan.
Can a family member or friend sit with me during my MRI scan?
Yes! Some patients feel better just knowing someone else is in the room with them. A family member or friend is more than welcome to sit in the room and watch TV with you. They will be required to also fill out a MRI screening form to make sure it is safe for them to be in the room.