Your orthopedic physician may have recommended you get an MRI and now you’re doing your due diligence and researching what you should know before the MRI.  Many people  have heard some bad stories about getting MRI’s or just fear the idea of lying on a table and sliding inside a “big box”. In spite of the stories, MRI’s are not that scary and they’ll help your doctor diagnose your injury better.  There are some common concerns people have before getting an MRI and in this article will address 5 things you should know before you get an MRI.

It’s safe – MRI’s are safe, there are some common risk associated with magnetic fields and radio waves. If safety is truly a concern for you, please discuss with your physician. Before your MRI you will be asked to complete a safety screen and it’s important that you answer those questions openly and honestly.

Don’t move – It’s important that you lay still in the machine, so the MRI technician can get the pictures needed. Moving can decrease the quality of the photos or make the photo unreadable. So stay as focused as possible and try not to let your mind wonder as it will be very easy to move around.

It’s doesn’t take that long – The amount of time it take to complete an MRI depends on where you are getting the scan. In some cases you can be out of there in 30 minutes and some MRI’s will take up to 90 minutes. The key is to remember to be as still as possible or you might have to start over.

Tune out the noise – You may be given ear plugs as the MRI machine is typically loud and does make some weird noises. Don’t be alarmed it’s supposed to do sound like that, and don’t let the noise scare you into moving.

No Metal – Metal is not permitted in a MRI machine, and that’s why it’s important to let the MRI technician know if you have any questions when you complete the safety screen. Things like hearing aids and medicine patches may be easy to overlook.

You now know what to expect for you MRI. There is nothing to fear as an MRI is a standard medical procedure. Remember to stay still so you don’t have to start over and be as open as possible when completing the safety screen.  The idea is that you are in and out as quickly as possible. If you have any questions about an MRI or would like to learn more visit or diagnostic imaging section of our website or make an appointment with an IBJI orthopedic physician.

This information is not intended to provide advise or treatment for a specific situation. Consult your physician and medical team for information and treatment plans on your specific condition(s).