MRI Patient Guide
For Parents & Children.
A Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan uses a powerful magnet and radiowaves to produce superbly detailed views of the human body, particularly joints and soft tissues, such as the brain, spinal cord and muscles.
Unlike other imaging tests, MRI does not use radiation. Though some discomfort may occur from having to lay still, MRI is otherwise a painless procedure and typically takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes to perform.
At Melbourne Radiology Clinic, we care about your child’s safety and health, and aim to ensure the most appropriate imaging protocol is selected so your child’s scans are performed safely and targeted to their clinical needs.
No preparation is necessary for an MRI scan. Your child can eat and drink normally.
Though some discomfort may occur from having to lay still, MRI is otherwise a painless procedure.
As a strong magnet is used, all metallic devices MUST be removed before entering the MRI room. This includes clothes with metal zips and any toys that might have a metal component.
Wide Bore MRI.
Siemens Wide-Bore MRI
16% Wider Than Conventional MRI
Patient Comfort – Wide Bore MRI.
Melbourne Radiology Clinic’s MRI scanner is the latest Siemens Espree unit which has a wide bore that is 16% wider than conventional MRI units. Patients may experience less anxiety when entering the enclosed space of the MRI scanner at Melbourne Radiology Clinic
Our Wide-Bore MRI scanner sets the standard for patient comfort. This means that those patients who suffer from claustrophobia or have a large build can be scanned in comfort. Patients having a MRI of their lumbar spine or body areas below such as knees, ankles or feet can enter the scanner feet first ensuring maximum comfort for the patient.
HOW TO BEST SUPPORT YOUR CHILD DURING THEIR SCAN
Additional Notes For Parents.
Parents or carers may also accompany their child into the MRI scanning room and sit next to them for the duration of the scan. Please follow the instructions of our MRI technician. They will show you where to sit (or stand) during the scan. The accompanying adult will also be asked to complete a MRI Companion Form and Questionnaire.
The most important role of a parent or guardian during the scan is to help your child stay calm and relaxed. It is particularly important that your child stays still during the MRI.
Depending on the age of your child, you may want to bring along a “comfort” item—such as a favourite stuffed animal, toy or “blankie” — for your child to hold during the scan.
Children can also bring their favourite DVD or music to listen to (on an iPod or similar digital music player).
What To Expect During The MRI Scan.
Once the scan is under way as you will hear a loud vibrating or knocking sound. Noise cancelling head-phones are provided and your child can choose to listen to music or depending on the scan, watch live TV or a DVD of their choice.
It is very important that you encourage your child keep your body extremely still during the scan. Movement during a scan will result in lower quality or blurred images, similar to the blurring effect that occurs when taking a photograph of a moving object.
Some suggestions to help…
Imagine you are a rag doll…
Pretend you are a statue or asleep…
Usually four or five different types of MRI scans called sequences are taken with each one lasting about 2–8 minutes. Overall, your child will be in the scanner for about 20 minutes. A sequence or sequences may need to be repeated if there is bluring of the images due to excessive movement, as mentioned above.
You will be in constant communication with the technician who conducts the MRI. Their role is to ensure that your child is comfortable and both of you will be kept up-to-date with the progress of the scans. As an additional safety mechanism, your child will be provided with a buzzer to hold during the scan. Press this at anytime should you feel exceedingly uncomfortable or anxious to gain the attention of the MRI technician. The scan at this point will be stopped and your child will be immediately attended to by our staff.
- Some patients undergoing an MRI scan may require an injection of an intravenous (IV) dye (contrast) known as Gadolinium, which is a paramagnetic substance that is visible on MRI scans. If contrast is required for your child's scan, this will be discussed with you by our MRI Technician and /or Radiologist on the day of your appointment.
IMAGES: Fluid sensitive MRI demonstrates striking bone marrow oedema (inflammation) within the distal tibia. Pre and post contrast studies through the same region demonstrate enhancement of the inflammation, these findings are in keeping with a Brodie’s abscess and consistent with the diagnosis of osteomyelitis (bone infection).
- Further Information: MRI Patient Safety & Health – MRI Contrast →
One of Melbourne Radiology Clinic’s specialist radiologists, a medical doctor specialising in the interpretation of medical images for the purposes of providing a diagnosis, will then review the images and provide a formal written report. If medically urgent, or you have an appointment immediately after the scan to be seen by your doctor or health care provider, Melbourne Radiology Clinic will have your results ready without delay. Otherwise, the report will be received by your doctor or health care provider within the next 24 hours.
Please ensure that you make a follow up appointment with your referring doctor or health care provider to discuss your results.
Your referring doctor or health care provider is the most appropriate person to explain to you the results of the scans and for this reason, we do not release the results directly to you.