Magnetic resonance imaging
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a medical investigation that can be used to diagnose a number of diseases. The investigation is painless. MRI uses a strong magnetic field, radio waves and a computer to obtain an image of human organs and tissues. Detailed MRI images can often be used to diagnose diseases that cannot be assessed by other radiological methods.
The MRI machine is like a tunnel surrounded by a magnet. The patient lies on the investigation table, which then moves into the tunnel. It is important to lie still in the tunnel during the scan, otherwise the scan will fail.
If a contrast agent is to be used, the radiology technician will insert a venous cannula. Sometimes you will be asked to hold your breath for a few seconds during the scan. The staff will monitor you through the window throughout the scan and you will always be able to communicate with the staff through the audio system.
When the investigation is completed, the radiology technician enters the investigation room and moves the investigation table out of the tunnel. The venous cannula is taken out. An MRI scan can last from a quarter of an hour to an hour.
An appointment must be made in advance for the investigation.