After you have your routine check-up, or after a consultation with your doctor when you’ve been feeling poorly, you could be sent for further testing. There could be symptoms, ones you have misjudged for a seasonal cold or flu, of an underlying disease. There are different kinds of diagnostic tests you might be advised to take, one of them is to get an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scan.
When preparing for your MRI scan, there are five things you need to know to prepare yourself better. Knowing more about the process may also help you deal with any unnecessary fear or reservations.
What is MRI?
The MRI scan takes an image of the area which the doctor will check. It could be of your brain, your spinal cord, or other body parts. Unlike other imaging technology like an X-Ray, it does not make use of radioactivity. The MRI makes use of magnetic fields and radio pulses to capture the image, making distinctions between muscle, fat, etc.
In situations where there is a poor natural contrast between the tissues, you may be prescribed a contrast injection in your elbow. The agent helps create a clearer image for the scan.
What can MRI scans help diagnose?
When you schedule an MRI scan in London under the recommendation of your doctor, the test proceeds with a specific issue in mind. The test only covers a specific area. However, for a broader view of what the MRI scan's capabilities are, it can help diagnose problems relating to the head and spinal trauma, it is useful in detecting the conditions for dementia, cerebrovascular disease, tumours, and epilepsy, to name a few. It can help diagnose musculoskeletal issues such as soft tissue tumours or other problems in muscles, ligaments, or tendons. The MRI scan can also act as a supplementary test for cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases.
What information do you need to tell the practitioner?
Before your scan, there are a couple of details you need to inform the staff about to ensure that the scan happens without any issues. If you are pregnant, please bring this to their attention. If you have a medical history that involves operations on your head, metal implants, eye injuries (involving metal fragments), and mechanical assistance such as pacemakers, cochlear implants, surgical clips, or neurostimulators. If you need a contrast injection, inform the staff if you have any kidney problems or allergies to gadolinium or iron.
What are the possible side effects?
There are technically no side effects to the MRI scan or the contrast injection. Although people who are claustrophobic or those with sensitive hearing might have an issue during the MRI scan, there are no issues afterwards.
Any issues you may have with the closed space or the loud noise has a countermeasure provided by the staff. It also does not require you to forego eating the night before the scan. You may proceed with your routine without any fear of it affecting the results of your scan. Hopefully, this provides you with enough information to take the scan without worry about side effects and other issues.
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