Due to the strong magnetic field, a technologist will review your clinical history prior to examination. MRI is not safe for patients with cardiac pacemakers, neurospinal stimulators and/or implanted defibrillators and an alternative procedure should be recommended. All metallic objects must be removed prior to exam. We prefer patients leave valuables, including jewelry and/or piercings, at home. All patients are required to change into scrubs or a gown regardless of the exam scheduled for MRI.
Prior to imaging, the first step of the procedure will be the placement of an intravenous access (IV) device for the use of a contrast material called Gadolinium that is administered during the last part of the procedure. VanRad uses only the safest type of IV contrast medium available and the technologist is able to observe and monitor you throughout the entire procedure. Once the IV is in place, you will be escorted to the MRI area where you will lay face down on the MRI table which has openings for your breasts. Your head will be facing the technologist's window giving you the feeling of openness and security.
Please plan on 90 minutes from the time of check-in to the completion of the procedure. The test itself lasts for approximately 45 minutes but is broken up into multiple 3-5 minute segments. During the final few minutes of the exam, the contrast material will be administered, and you may feel a bit of warmth and/or metallic taste in your mouth. This is normal and should not linger. It should also be noted that the post contrast segment of the exam will last approximately 11 minutes.
Please be advised throughout your MRI you must lie very still, face down, with your arms extended over your head, so the images being captured are not blurry. The noise of the procedure can be a loud knocking and/or whining sound with pitch changes. These can be slightly startling; however, we do provide earplugs for your exam. We suggest you focus on your breathing to help you relax and remain still. The technologist will talk to you between segments and you will be provided an emergency button to hold onto in case you need to contact the technologist at any time during the procedure.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding your exam, please ask your technologist. The technologist will ensure the images taken are complete and accurate, before you leave the clinic; however please note, the technologist does not interpret the images.