Persistent headaches, risk signs of a brain tumor, a head injury–all of these are reasons why your doctor may decide that you need to have an MRI of your head. Even though this type of MRI can sound a little scary, there is really nothing to fear. In many situations, your doctor will ask that a contrast solution is used to get a better look. If you are anticipating a head MRI with contrast dye and you are feeling apprehensive, it can be helpful to get some of the facts about what to expect before you go. Here is a look at three things you should expect to happen when you arrive for your MRI appointment with the radiologist:
You will probably be asked to undress for the procedure and wear a gown.
The MRI machine uses magnetic resonance imaging to get a closer look at your skull, brain, and other tissues and fluids that surround the area. Even though the MRI will be done only on your head and possibly your neck, you may have to wear a loose-fitting gown for the procedure. It is important that no restricting or tight-fitting clothing change your blood flow during the procedure and even something as small as a metal button on your jeans or metal underwires in a bra can interfere.
You will be given the contrast solution immediately before the MRI procedure.
Contrast solutions are given when there needs to be a precise look at specific elements of your head that could be hindered by the appearance of blood flow. The contrast solution is given intravenously into the bloodstream so that your blood temporarily takes on a different hue and consistency. Iodine and gadolinium are the two most common solutions used for contrast during an MRI, so if you've ever had a reaction to either, make sure you discuss this with the radiologist during your appointment.
Your MRI procedure will be over rather quickly.
There is more time that goes into preparing for a head MRI than actually having the procedure done most of the time. When you first arrive, you will discuss your health symptoms and concerns with the radiologist and then get a full explanation of what to expect during the procedure. In general, you can expect the MRI portion of the appointment to last between 30 and 60 minutes depending on the types of images that need to be taken during the procedure.
Contact a medical office like Kenai Peninsula Imaging Center, LLC for more information and assistance.
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