A doctor carries out many different types of scans on a daily basis as per the need and suitability of his patients. You should know that each different type of scan has its own unique advantages that make it suitable for a particular scenario, but that does not mean that the scan would fit into another scenario.
Scans are the most modern and efficient way of diagnosing a problem in the body because of the fact that they can give the doctor clear and internal images of the different parts of the body. Scans are of different degrees of complexity and each scan is unique from the other.
What is an MRI?
MRI is also known as Magnetic Resonance Imaging and is a technique used in radiology. An MRI makes use of radio waves, magnetism, and a modern computer with the requisite software to replicate images of various body structures. The MRI scanner is essentially a tube that is enclosed by a big, circular magnet. The patient has to lie on a moveable bed that is then pushed into the ambit of the magnet. The magnet forges a very strong magnetic field, aligning the protons of hydrogen atoms that are then exposed to beams of radio waves. This has the effect of spinning the protons present in the body. These spinning protons generate a faint signal that gets detected by the receiver of the MRI scanner. This receiver information is processed by a computer that then creates an image of the internals of the patient.
The image and resolution from an MRI are very accurate and detailed. An MRI can detect even tiny changes within the structure of the body. In some of the procedures, gadolinium, which is a contrast agent, is employed to increase image accuracy to the satisfaction of the radiologist.
Why is an MRI Useful?
An MRI scan is employed as a very accurate and swift method of the detection of diseases all through the body. It is most often put into use when other, traditional imaging techniques have proved to be inadequate in diagnosing the patient’s problem. Trauma to the head or the brain can be seen as swelling or bleeding. Some of the other abnormalities that an MRI can detect are stroke, brain aneurysms, as well as brain tumors. Spine inflammation can also be detected by an MRI.
An MRI can also give doctors very valuable information on the different organs and glands of the abdomen, and also convey exact and detailed information on the soft tissues, joints, and bones of the patient. In many cases, surgery can be delayed or deferred based on the MRI report. It helps doctors to have a second opinion on the issue at hand.
Similarities and Differences Between MRI and CT Scan
MRI is a scan that can produce detailed pictures of the internal body and organs; a CT scan produces the images on the inside of the body. While a CT scan uses radiation to operate, it may be harmful to the body which an MRI does not do. Also, MRI’s cost a lot more than CT scans.
Are there any risks or side effects with an MRI?
If you are scheduled for an MRI scan in Gurgaon, know that it is an absolutely painless radiology procedure. There exist absolutely no side effects of this procedure.
What are the precautions while undergoing an MRI?
If there are metallic materials on or within the patient’s body the physician or MRI staff has to be notified. Things like surgical clips, metallic chips, artificial joints, bone plates made of metal, or even prosthetic devices and teeth fillings can distort the images obtained from the MRI scanner. The magnet in the device is a very strong one and there is a risk that it will move the pacemakers, metal implants, or the metal chips out of their designated places. Patients who have any of the above cannot go through an MRI. In a similar vein, those who have artificial heart valves, bullet fragments, metallic implants in the ear, or insulin pumps are not suitable candidates for an MRI scan.
When the MRI scan takes place, the patient will have to lie in an enclosed area that is within the magnetic tube. Due to this, some may feel claustrophobic during the scan. Those who have a history of claustrophobia should let the technician know so that a mild sedative can be administered to them to make them less shifty. There will also be a buzzer on hand for the patient who can ring it if he/ she feels uncomfortable during the process of the scan.
When can I receive the MRI scan results?
After the MRI scan is done, the computer will produce detailed images of the parts of the body scanned. These images are transferred to film in what is known as the hard copy. A radiologist is highly trained in interpreting the MRI scan images. His interpretation will then be sent to your doctor who asked for the scan to be done. After studying the scan results, the doctor will relay the information to you and your family.
In this day and age, an MRI scan is very normal. If you have been asked to go for a scan, do not get worried, it is a routine way of determining if you have any physical abnormalities that need to be looked into medically.