What is MRI scanning?
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a noninvasive medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions.
MR imaging uses a powerful magnetic field, radio frequency pulses and a computer to produce detailed pictures of organs, soft tissues, bone and virtually all other internal body structures. The images can then be examined on a computer monitor, printed or copied to CD. MRI does not use ionizing radiation (x-rays).
Detailed MR images allow physicians to better evaluate various parts of the body and certain diseases that may not be assessed adequately with other imaging methods such as x-ray, ultrasound or computed tomography (also called CT or CAT scanning).
What are the benefits of an MRI?
MRI is a noninvasive imaging technique that does not involve exposure to ionizing radiation.
MRI images the soft-tissue structures of the body and is more likely to identify and characterize abnormalities and focal lesions than other imaging methods.
MRI has proven valuable in diagnosing a broad range of conditions, including cancer, heart and vascular disease, muscular and bone abnormalities.
MRI enables the discovery of abnormalities that might be obscured by bone with other imaging methods.
The contrast material used in MRI exams is less likely to produce an allergic reaction than the iodine-based materials used for conventional x-rays and CT scans.
MRI provides a fast, noninvasive alternative to x-ray angiography for diagnosing problems of the heart and blood vessels.