General Article

What to Expect from an Open MRI

If you’ve never had an open MRI before, you’re probably curious about what to expect. Most people are pleasantly surprised to discover that open MRIs, like the ones at Middletown Medical Imaging, aren’t too stressful and often seem to take less time than expected.

Almost any medical test provokes anxiety, and it’s normal to feel a little nervous before your scan. However, please keep in mind that it’s a painless procedure, and the medical personnel in charge will do everything in their power to make it a pleasant, stress-free experience.

What to Wear

Due to the magnetic field of the open mri scanner, you’ll be asked to wear metal-free clothing or to change into a hospital gown. You’ll also need to remove any metallic objects, like jewelry, hair clips and watches. Tell your technician if you have any type of metal implant, such as a pacemaker.

During the Procedure

A technician will guide you into position and may place a device called a coil around the area to be scanned. Once you’re in position, the technician will leave to operate the MRI scanner from another room, called the scanner suite. The scanner suite is visible through a viewing window. The technician will be in communication with you throughout the scan. This should help alleviate some of your anxiety and help make sure the scan is accurate.

After the Procedure

After the procedure, a radiologist will review the information collected during the scan and write a report. This information is usually shared with your healthcare provider within a day or two of your scan. For many people, this period of waiting for results is often as anxiety-provoking as the scan itself, but know that most health care providers do their best to get the results to you as soon as possible.

If you’re scheduled for an open MRI, know that it’s a routine procedure that doesn’t subject your body to radiation. Open MRIs are good alternatives to closed MRIs for many patients, including pediatric patients, the elderly, and those that suffer from claustrophobia.