Magnetic Resonance Imaging


What is an MRI?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a powerful magnetic field, radio waves and a computer to produce detailed pictures of the body’s internal structures that are clearer, more detailed and more likely in some instances to identify and accurately characterize disease than other imaging methods. It is used to evaluate the body for a variety of conditions, including tumors and diseases of the liver, heart, and bowel. It may also be used to monitor an unborn child in the womb. MRI is noninvasive and does not use ionizing radiation.

How to prepare for your MRI?

Please follow any instructions given by your healthcare provider.

MRI uses a strong magnetic field and radio waves to make detailed pictures.
Please wear appropriate comfortable, loose fitting clothing, MRI safe clothes without metal fasteners, including zippers, buttons and snaps.

If there are body piercings that cannot be removed without a device please be sure to have a piercing salon remove them prior to your appointment.

Read over our MRI Metal Checklist here.

What to expect during your MRI?

Please plan to be in the imaging center for approximately one hour for your MRI. The MRI technologist will walk you through a series of questions to ensure we have all the pertinent information needed prior to your exam. The technologist will then ask you to remove any metal from your pockets and/or your person. We will give you a locker to secure all of your belongings during the exam. If needed, we will also provide a gown for you to change into for your exam.  The technologist will make you comfortable on the table, provide you with earplugs or headphones to listen to music, and will then begin the exam.  You will be able to communicate with the technologist during the entire exam through a patient intercom system. You will need to remain as relaxed and still as possible during your exam to make sure the technologist is able to get the clearest images possible. After your exam, most patients are free to leave and resume regular activities.

How long does an MRI scan take?

Depending on the type of exam and the equipment used, the entire exam usually takes 30 to 50 minutes to complete. Your healthcare provider will be able to give you a more exact time range based on the specific reason for your scan.

When should I know the results of my MRI?

After your MRI scan, a radiologist will analyze the images. The radiologist will send a signed report to your ordering healthcare provider within 24 hours of the scan.  Your provider will share the results with you.