What to Expect When You Need an MRI Scan

Woman in MRI

Needing medical treatment is often scary, confusing, and overwhelming.  This is especially true when you need a procedure or treatment you’re unfamiliar with.  For example, an MRI scan is a common request from doctors to help them see inside a patient’s body without surgery.  If your doctor has recommended that you get an MRI, you may be wondering what the experience is like.  Here’s what you can expect before, during, and after the appointment.

What is an MRI?

First, MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. It is similar to an X-ray, but instead of radiation, an MRI machine uses magnets that send resonating radio waves through your body that are then captured in a digital image.  You will lay on a movable table that is pushed through a machine shaped like a long tube that is open at both ends to capture this image.

How Long Does an MRI Take?

The time your scan will take depends on the area being scanned and your ability to cooperate. It’s very important to remain perfectly still, if you accidentally move too much, you may need to retake the scan.  If all goes well, the scan can be as short as 20 minutes for scanning a small area, or up to one hour if the entire body needs scanning.

How Should I Prepare for the MRI?

There shouldn’t be much you need to do other than scheduling the appointment to prepare yourself for the MRI scan.  Eat, drink, and take your medication like normal, unless otherwise advised by your doctor.  When you arrive, you’ll be asked to change into a medical gown and remove all possible metal items such as earrings, glasses, watches, hearing aids, etc.  If you have any internal devices that may contain metal, talk with your doctor to see if they are a concern.  If so, you may need to find an alternative to the MRI scan.

What Happens After the MRI?

Once the procedure is complete, you can get dressed and move on with your day.  You will be able to return to work, school, or home immediately.  Your doctor will review the images, make a diagnosis, and develop a treatment plan.  You should expect a follow-up appointment with your doctor a few days after the MRI scan.

Where Can I Get an MRI Near Me?

Searching for a high-quality MRI shouldn’t be difficult. Contact Advanced Surgical Hospital to schedule your MRI appointment today.  We work with doctors and hospitals from all over the area and make your comfort as a patient our highest priority.  You’ll be greeted with a helpful smile when you arrive and have access to some of the newest technology for a comfortable experience.