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MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

What is an MRI?

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic imaging technology that uses a strong magnetic field and radio waves to produce images of your internal organs and structures.

Preparing for an MRI

  • A safety questionnaire must be completed before an MRI can be booked. This questionnaire will identify such things as surgical clips, prostheses, metal implants or any other metal objects in your body. The information will enable MRI personnel to determine whether or not to proceed with the MRI exam.
  • You may be required to fast (not eat) 4 hours before your MRI.
  • If you have a pacemaker, you cannot have an MRI.
  • Please arrive 30 minutes before your scheduled appointment time to allow time for preparation.
  • During the MRI scan, some exams require an injection of a colourless and very safe contrast agent (dye).
  • Magnetic objects cannot be brought into the procedure room because of the strong magnetic field. Surgical clips or metallic implants may have been inserted, and this must be verified before entering the scan room. Metallic fragments in your eyes can also pose a danger.

Risks or Complications:

  • Rare chance of allergic reaction to contrast media (dye).
  • Inform your doctor or the technologist of any allergies or if you have diabetes, asthma, kidney problems, or if you are or might be pregnant.

How long will an MRI take?

An MRI will take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the area being scanned.

After Your Procedure

If Your Child Has Been Sedated

If your child has been sedated in order to do the necessary exam, he/she will be kept at the hospital until it is felt that he/she can be discharged. Once your child is okay to leave the hospital, he/she may exhibit some symptoms of this sedation for the next few hours.

  • Foods and Fluids:
    If your child seems fully awake and alert, usual foods and fluids may be given but avoid large chunky foods such as hot dogs.
  • Activity:
    Your child's coordination, balance and perception may be affected. It is advised that he/she be carefully supervised for a few hours and to avoid climbing of any kind or descending stairs. Watching T.V. or reading are good activities to do with your child.
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