Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a revolutionary medical imaging technique that uses a strong magnetic field and radio waves to generate detailed images of the body's internal structures. It provides valuable information for diagnosing and monitoring a wide range of medical conditions without using ionising radiation.

What it entails:

During an MRI scan, the patient lies on a bed that slides into an open cylindrical bore called an MRI scanner. The scanner has a magnetic field and uses radio waves, causing the atoms in the body's tissues to emit signals. Specialised detectors in the scanner capture these signals, which are then processed by a computer to create detailed cross-sectional images of the body. 

MRI scans do not involve the use of ionising radiation, such as X-rays or radioactive materials. Instead, it relies on the natural magnetic properties of the body's tissues and the radio waves to generate the images. This makes MRI a safe imaging modality. 

Benefits of MRI:


  • MRI provides highly detailed images of the body's internal structures, including organs, soft tissues, bones, and blood vessels. It allows healthcare professionals to visualise and evaluate abnormalities, diseases, injuries, and other conditions more precisely.
  • MRI is a non-invasive examination. In some cases, a contrast agent (a dye) may be administered intravenously to enhance the visibility of certain structures. MRI has the advantage of using gadolinium-based contrast agents, which are generally safer and well tolerated.
  • MRI can also provide functional information about the body's tissues and organs, such as blood flow, metabolism, and brain activity. Functional MRI (fMRI) is a specialised technique used to study brain function. 



It is essential to follow any specific instructions provided by your healthcare provider or the Reform Radiology team regarding preparation for the MRI scan. If you have any concerns or questions about the procedure, do not hesitate to discuss them with our friendly team or your healthcare provider. 

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Before Your Scan

Preparing for an MRI scan:

  • Clothing and accessories: If possible, leave valuables at home. You will be asked to change into a gown and remove any metallic objects, including jewellery, watches, and hairpins.
  • Inform the MRI technologist about any implants or devices in your body, such as pacemakers, artificial heart valves, cochlear implants, or neuro-stimulators. Some implants may be contraindicated (Not safe) for an MRI.
  • If a contrast agent is required for your scan, the MRI technologist will inform you about any specific instructions, such as fasting before the scan. Guidelines about eating and drinking before an MRI vary between specific examinations. Our team will let you know in advance. Take food and medications as usual unless instructed otherwise.
  • Please let our team know if you are or think you could be pregnant. 

During Your Scan

The MRI technologist will complete the safety check with you. We will then take you into the scanner room. You will be positioned on the examination bed, and we will try to make you as comfortable as possible. 

The MRI technologist may place imaging devices on the region that will be examined. These can send and receive radio waves from your body to create the images. 

The doughnut shaped MRI scanner is open at both ends. The body part being examined is placed into the center of the MRI scanner. During your examination you will be given a squeeze ball (patient safety bell) in case you need assistance during your scan. Our staff can see and hear you the whole time so please know that you are safe. 

The MRI scanner makes a variety of loud noises during the scan and the MRI technologist will provide hearing protection in the form of earplugs and headphones.  

Sometimes we will ask you to hold your breath during the examination. This will be important especially when we examine your chest or abdomen. 

If contrast is required for the scan, an MRI technologist or Radiologist will insert an intravenous catheter (IV line) into a small vein in your hand or arm. The contrast provides additional detailed information that helps the Radiologist interpret your images. 

After Your Scan

After completion of the exam, the MRI technologist may check with the Radiologist to find out if more images are required and will then let you know. 

The IV line will be removed, and a small dressing placed over the insertion site.  

Your images are extensively interpreted by a specialised doctor (Radiologist). The Radiologist will issue a formal exam report which is then sent to your clinician in a timely manner.