What is an MRI?
Magnetic Resonance Imaging or MRI is a highly sophisticated medical imaging technique that uses a magnetic field and radio waves to produce very clear pictures of the inside of the body. These black and white images enable physicians to often make a diagnosis, eliminating the need for biopsy or surgery. Since no x-rays are used, there is no exposure to radiation with MRI. The MRI is used to diagnose diseases of the:
- Blood vessels
When is an MRI used?
MRI is a great way to identify abnormalities and injuries in our body including, sports injuries and other problems with joints such as the knee and shoulder. It also is used in the diagnosis of cancer. It can detect injuries to the spine such as herniated discs.
How do I prepare?
Before undergoing an MRI exam there will be a thorough questionnaire to be filled out. Be sure to inform your physician or the technologist if you are pregnant or if you have:
- A cardiac pacemaker
- An artificial heart valve
- A metal plate, pin or metallic implant
- An intrauterine device such as copper – 7 IUD
- Aneurysm clips
- Previous gunshot wound
- Ever worked around grinding of metal
- Permanent (tattoo) eyeliner
Please remember to wear comfortable clothing with no metal. You may be asked to remove jewelry, belts or clothing with metal or designs.
What can I expect?
A technologist will have you lie down on a cushioned table attached to the MRI. A device called a coil will be placed either above or below the area of the body being examined. This device helps produce a clearer image of the area. The MRI is an enclosed but well-lit chamber. Once you are comfortable, the table will begin to move slowly into the chamber of the magnet. A technologist will stay in contact with you throughout the procedure, both visually and via intercom. During the exam you will hear muffled thumping sounds for several minutes at a time. A number of images will be made. It is important to try to relax and remain as still as possible, as any movement during the exam will blur the image and produce less accurate results. The length of time of an MRI can differ greatly depending on the exam, but most can be completed in 45 to 60 minutes.
When can I expect results?
A highly qualified radiologist will carefully review and interpret images taken during your MRI. A report will then be sent to your referring physician within 48 hours.
If your scan is ordered by an MOI physician, please make a follow up appointment after your MRI, so you will be able to discuss the results and future treatment with your ordering physician.
If your scan is ordered by a non-MOI physician, you will be given a disc of your MRI to take back to the ordering physician. Please make a follow up appointment with your ordering doctor’s office to review the results.
How do I schedule an MRI?
Your medical provider will determine whether an MRI is needed. This decision is usually made after a careful history and physical examination is performed. Your doctor’s office will pre-certify your scan with your insurance company if it is required. Some insurance companies do not require pre-certification. Once you have your MRI order and pre-certification has been done you may contact one of our three locations.
Midwest Orthopaedic Institute
Sycamore – 815-991-2328
Sandwich – 815-786-3794
What Location is best for me?
Choose a location that is closest to your home and will make you the most comfortable.
Our Sycamore location has a GE 1.5T scanner that can accommodate patients weighing up to 350 lbs.
1310 N. Main St.Sandwich, IL 60548
Our Sandwich unit is located in Valley West Hospital. The unit is a Toshiba Titan 1.5T scanner that can accommodate a patient weighing up to 440 lbs.