What is the MRI Exam like?

The exam usually takes 30 to 60 minutes. It consists of several image exposures lasting 10 to 15 minutes each.

You'll be asked to remove your make-up, eyeglasses, watch, jewelry, credit cards, dentures, hearing aids and any other metallic objects you are carrying. Then, the technologist will help you lie down on a cushioned table. A device called a 'coil' will be placed over or under you. It helps the MRI system create a clear picture of your body. When you are comfortably positioned, the table will move under the magnet.

The technologist will then step into the control area, while staying in constant contact with you both visually and through an intercom. As the exam proceeds, you will hear a muffled thumping sound for several minutes at a time. Other than the sound, the MRI creates no bodily sensation.

Relax and try to lie as still as possible. Any movement during this time will blur the picture. When the exam is done, the technologist will help you off the table.