MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

Magnetic Resonance Imaging, the latest and most advanced type of diagnostic scanning. MRI forms "images," or pictures, of the internal structures of the body.

At UPHSM we operate two GE 1.5T MR system, one of the most advanced permanent magnets for outstanding image quality. We are located through the east entrance on College Avenue, ground floor.
Exams are scheduled through the central scheduling department, (906) 225-3551.

Hours of operation are -
6:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. Monday - Friday,
Saturday and Sunday - On call for emergency scans only.
All MRI patients are required to arrive in the MRI Department 15 minutes prior to their exam time.
Phone number to MRI Department - 906.449.3170

Phone number to MRI Supervisor/MRI Safety Officer - Rochelle Ann Lane BS,R.T., (R) (MR) - 906-225-3777 
Click here to find out more information on a certain MRI Scan.


 About an MRI

MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging, the latest and most advanced type of diagnostic scanning. MRI forms "images," or pictures, of the internal structures of the body.
MRI uses radio waves, a powerful electromagnet and a computer to view the soft tissue of the body. MRI is capable of diagnosis and assessment of many diseases earlier than other diagnostic techniques.

You may already be familiar with CT scanning, which uses X-rays to study tissues. MRI uses a similar computerized process, but introduces a technology that images your body organs and chemistry without radiation.

Information on a MRI Scan

The MRI procedure is painless and takes only 15 to 60 minutes to complete. Each set of scans takes 5 to 10 minutes, and there are usually several sets of scans for each study.

Patients lie on a comfortable motorized table, which slides inside of a large frame containing a strong magnet. The interior of the frame is lighted and ventilated for patient comfort.

Throughout the scan, patients are in contact with MRI staff by means of a special intercom. A mild pulsing or tapping sound is produced by the scanner during the imaging process; otherwise, there is no sensation during the exam.

The only thing you will have to remember while the machine is working is to remain as still as possible so we can capture the clearest possible pictures.

Common Questions - MRI

What should I do to prepare?
Wear comfortable clothes, preferably without metal. Bring any paperwork given to you by your ordering physician. Bring any and all pervious, pertinent x-rays, CT or MRI films. You should plan on arriving in the MRI department 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
Will it hurt?
MRI is a painless procedure.
How long will the exam take?
The exam will take between fifteen minutes and one hour from the time you lie on the table.

How will I feel after the exam?
You should feel perfectly normal and be able to resume your everyday activities, unless you were sedated. Patients who take/receive sedation will receive discharge instructions at the time of their exam.

Can I take my prescribed medication?
Those having MRCP exams to check for stones in the common bile duct, and people who need sedation/pain management or anesthesia are the only patients that will have special instructions on diet/medication restrictions. All other patients should eat, drink and take prescribed medication as normal. MRCP patients are to have nothing to eat or drink 4 hours prior to exam time. These patients should continue to take their prescribed medication however with a small sip of water. Patients who are scheduled for sedation and/or pain management or anesthesia will be given special instructions at the time their appointment is scheduled.
What about the contrast used?
Contrast is used in the MRI department, Gadolinium, is nonionic extracellular enhancing agent for MR use. It is generally administered by intravenous injection.
If you have any of the following please call the MRI department, if you are to receive MRI contrast. -Renal disease, including solitary kidney, renal transplant, or renal tumor -Over 60 years of age -History of hypertension -History of diabetes -History of severe hepatic disease or liver transplant.
If ANY of the above are true, the patient will need to have a Creatine with GFR (make sure you write GFR on the lab slip) within 6 weeks of the MRI, to receive MRI contrast. It cannot be older than 6 weeks.

What if I am claustrophobic?
You should contact your ordering physician so they can make arrangements prior to your MRI exam.

How will I learn the results?
After receiving the results of your MRI, your physician will discuss the findings with you.

What Are The Advantages of MRI?

MRI is "noninvasive." MRI does not use X-rays, so there is no exposure to ionizing radiation. Injections or doses of imaging contrast are given as needed. There are no known side effects from having an MRI.

In addition to your safety and comfort, MRI offers an exceptional view of internal organs. The high sensitivity of MRI, combined with three dimensional viewing, produces diagnostic images of outstanding clarity.

MRI can eliminate the need for biopsy or exploratory surgery in some cases, and can detect problems that have been hidden on prior tests. This can result in earlier diagnosis of many diseases.

Is MRI For Everyone?

MRI uses a powerful magnetic field, which can disturb metallic objects in the body. For this reason, patients with cardiac pacemakers, intracranial aneurysm clips or metal fragments are not candidates for MRI scanning, unless specifically approved by the supervising physicians. Other metallic devices (such as prosthetic heart valves and orthopedic appliances) are usually safe for MRI exams, but should be brought to the attention of MRI personnel. It is very important to notify the MRI Department if you suspect there are metal fragments in your eyes or if you have had any metal fragments removed from your eyes.

Although MRI is believed to be safe during pregnancy, a cautious approach is recommended. Pregnant patients should consult their physicians about the advisability of an MRI scan.

Cost Effectiveness of MRI

By eliminating the need for invasive radiographic procedures, biopsies, and exploratory surgery, MRI saves money while minimizing patient risk and discomfort. For example, MRI can reduce the need for myelography and angiography, and can eliminate repeatedly "negative" CT scans that miss occult disease.

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