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MRI facts and basic information

For those who are not that familiar with this abbreviation, it stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. This particular type of testing, or the testing that employs the MRI, is based on the use of a magnetic field, as well as the pulses of radio wave energy, with detailed pictures of the head being the end result. The strength of this machine lies in the fact that in many cases it will provide a doctor with a more detailed and precise account of a person’s condition of the brain than, for example, an X-ray, computed tomography – also known as the CT, and the ultrasound.

Undergoing an MRI test

In order to make an MRI of the person’s head, this person needs to take up a lying position while the head is placed inside the scanner, which has in it a magnet of fair strength. This particular kind of scanning has the ability to reveal to the doctors the presence of such conditions as the damage, inflammation, various infections, and even that most dreaded by the greatest number of people – a tumor. There are certain cases that require the use of a dye, also known as the contrast material, with the aim of making those pictures of the entire structure even more precise and clearer. What this aider can point out to is the blood flow, also the specific kinds of tumor, as well as the inflamed areas on the body. Another quite common use of the MRI is when there is a need to discover what lies at the core of more intense and painful headache.

MRI and the head

The magnetic resonance imaging is performed for the purpose of discovering and diagnosing such conditions and illnesses as stroke, and also blood vessels related abnormalities in the person’s head. Some of the most frequent types of the above-mentioned conditions are aneurism and abnormal twisted blood vessels, which occur at the birth of a baby. Other uses:

In doing a check up of the regularity of blood flow, and the blood clots to the person’s brain,In order to investigate more thoroughly into the manifestations of an already familiar injury, or the one that is suspected to be present,In order to make a better analysis of the manifestations such as change in consciousness, confusion and abnormal movements that may appear due to the presence of illnesses affecting the person’s brain – Huntington’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease as well,To investigate whether there is water present in the person’s brain or not – condition known as the hydrocephaly,To search for various infections, tumors, conditions of the brain/brain stem – meningitis and encephalitis

Duration of the test ranges from 30 to 60 minutes, in some cases even 2 hours, and is performed by an MRI technologist. The pictures are read and analyzed by a radiologist. In certain cases a person may get a tingling sensation in the mouth if there exist metal dental fillings and warmth in the head. In case there occur nausea, dizziness, headaches, pain, and burning, you should report this to your doctor immediately. Though no harmful effects of the MRI test are familiar, due to the power of the magnet, the MRI might affect such devices as pacemakers, implantable cardioverter-defibrillators, artificial limbs and similar medical devices that are made of or consist of iron.

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