MRI scan: what you need to know

Magnetic Resonance Imaging or MRI Scan as we call it is a scan procedure that gives very detailed and intricate images of our internal body organs and structures, tissues and bones. Trusted by doctors around the world, MRI Scan makes use of strong magnetic fields and radio waves to take a peek inside the human body and present it in the form of images on the computer screen. It is a pretty safer option to CT Scan or X-Ray. The procedure abstains from exposing human body to radiation that poses severe health hazards.

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Why & When do you need MRI Scan?

MRI has been a breakthrough invention in the field of medical research and treatment. Scientists, researchers, and doctors have since been improving techniques in the procedure to get an even accurate picture detecting defects in the internal structures of the human body. Doctors usually recommend an MRI for a patient to diagnose a certain disease and abnormality or also to check how well a patient is reacting to a treatment procedure.

A doctor or surgeon takes a very critical decision when suggesting an MRI Scan to detect certain anomalies in the internal system. Here are some areas where MRI Scan is used:

  • Brain and Spinal Cord - The nervous system is the most important system that keeps our body running. Brain aneurysms, stroke, tumours of the brain, as well as tumours or inflammation of the spine are easily detected with an MRI scan. Doctors also suggest the test to get an accurate picture of the strands of abnormal tissues if a patient has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. MRI detects injury or bleeding in the blood vessels of the brain. It also says if the brain tissues are suffering from lack of oxygen after a stroke. The aftermaths of injuries or accidents that might have caused problems with the vertebrae or intervertebral discs of the spine are rightly detected by MRI of the spinal cord.
  • Heart - Not just the nervous system, MRI also helps detect faults in the heart and blood vessels. Heart problems, blocked blood vessels, the structure of the heart and aorta, and also change in the thickness of the muscles around the heart can be found out with an MRI scan.
  • Tumours and Cysts - Doctors and surgeons rely widely on the accurateness of the MRIs to test if a tumour is malignant or benign. Not just on the brain and spine, MRI can detect tumours in different parts of the body
  • Joint Injuries - If you are suffering from issues such as a back pain, doctors usually will recommend MRI Scan to be done to examine the joints and bones. It also helps detect cancer in the bones and spinal disc problems. 
  • Other Organs - MRI also tests anomalies in the spleen, pancreas, liver, ovaries, breasts and prostrates.

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How do you prepare for an MRI?

Not much preparation is required for an MRI Scan. Some simple rules are to be followed. Let the doctor know 

  •  If you have any allergies
  •  If you suffer from liver or kidney disease
  •  If you have undergone a recent surgery
  •  If you are pregnant
  •  If you have metals in the body (piercings, metal limbs, pacemaker etc.)

Doctors opt for an MRI to decide on the direction of surgery or to see if a surgery can be avoided altogether. An MRI Scan is the most valued test result for a treatment of the nervous system