Our Wide Bore MRI
St Charles Spine Institute, along with St Charles Imaging Center has one of the most advanced diagnostic tools for assisting the physicians to reach confident diagnoses and helping patients feel more comfortable during MR scans.
The new Optima MR450w system from GE Healthcare has advanced capabilities and delivers uncompromised image quality. This advanced technology helps make the scanning experience more user-friendly for patients and doctors as well.
What is Wide Bore MRI?
A Wide Bore MRI is an imaging system that is open to comfortably accommodate all patients (table weight limit is 500lbs). This differs from the traditional tunnel-style magnetic resonance imager in which some patients feel confined and uncomfortable.
How should you prepare for the procedure?
MRI uses a strong magnetic field. Patients will be interviewed prior to the exam and asked if they have any metallic objects in their body. If there is any question of metal fragments being present, you may be asked to have an x-ray that will detect any such objects. In most cases, cardiac stents, artificial heart valves, prosthetic joints, and surgical staples, plates, pins and screws pose no risk during MRI if they have been in place for more than four to six weeks. The REVO Pacemaker by Medtronic is “MRI Conditional.”
Ideal clothing should be worn for your MRI exam; clothing should not have any metal snaps, buttons, or zippers (e.g. sports bra, shorts or pants with elastic waste, jogging suits).
As with all radiological procedures, patients should inform the technologist if there is any chance of pregnancy.
What can a person expect during the MRI study?
The patient is placed on a sliding table by the technologist and positioned comfortably for the study in the bore of the scanner. The technologist leaves the room and programs individual MRI sequences that typically last between 2 and 6 minutes each. A tapping or knocking noise will be heard during the imaging process.
An intercom allows the patient and technologist to communicate with each other at any time during the study. Depending on the number of images necessary, the study will generally take 20-30 minutes. You will be asked not to move during each sequence while breathing normally.
Depending upon the study, a contrast material (gadolinium) may be injected intravenously in an arm vein. This material will enhance certain tissues or blood vessels, making them more conspicuous and aiding diagnosis.