Disease Management

Is MRI 100% safe?

Salwa Allenjawi/ Director of Medical Imaging
Aspetar
28 August, 2018

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Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a kind of medical imaging (radiology test) that doctors may use to facilitate diagnosis and administer many health disorders. MRI scanners use magnetic fields, radio waves and a computer to make detailed images of the body structures. MRI scans does not cause any pain and are safe as long as sufficient precautions are undertaken. The benefit of MRI is that, differ from X-rays and CT scans, it does not use ionizing radiation. Conversely, MRI scans have disadvantages and are not constantly the preferred sort of scan. Although MRI scans are covered by health insurance companies for some medical conditions, sometime there are out-of-pocket expenses combined with the scan.
MRI is similar to all tests and imaging which should only be performed if it is likely to add benefit to the diagnosis, treatment and management of your health condition.


MRI Safety
- MRI scans can be a safe procedure if you do not have any implants or objects on you that should not go in the scanner.
- You are requested to remove all metallic belongings, such as watches, keys and jewelry, because of the powerful magnetic fields generated by the MRI scanner the metal objects will be attracted.
Any metal-containing object in your body, such as medicine pumps and aneurysm clips can be pulled very easily because of the magnetic field of the MRI scanner. In other cases, and as a result of the technology (radiofrequency energy) that is used for the procedure, (older-style) medical implants may heat up during the scan.
MRI scans could also cause malfunction to the heart pacemakers, defibrillation devices and cochlear implants.
A comprehensive screening procedure should be available in every MRI facility that, when it is carefully followed, we will ensure that MRI will be used only on people for whom it is safe. Numerous newer medical implants are now constructed to be MRI-compatible, so when the doctors know the precise description of your implant they’ll be confident to tell you if it’s safe for you to undergo an MRI. In case you have an implant that might make the MRI unsafe, the radiologist may propose you have an alternative type of scan.


Pregnancy risks
MRI is considered more safe than X-rays or CT scans for the unborn child (fetus). Sometimes, MRI scans might cause minor warming of the body. Therefore, as a precaution, most clinics refrain from MRI scanning during the first trimester (3 months) of pregnancy, except for crucial conditions. Beyond that, MRI scans are commonly considered safe in pregnancy and are frequently used to check the baby’s development, while non-urgent scans are generally postponed until after the delivery. In some circumstances, alternative scans such as an ultrasound may be used as a substitute for MRI.

 

Most people believe that MRI is 100% safe as it does not use any ionizing radiation, this information is absolutely wrong. MRI is considered safe if special precaution measures are taken.

 

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