To date, over 150 million patients have had MRI examinations. Every year, approximately 10 million patients undergo MRI procedures. MRI has been shown to be extremely safe as long as proper safety precautions are taken. In general, the MRI procedure produces no pain and causes no known short-term or long-term tissue damage of any kind.

The powerful magnetic field of the scanner can attract certain metallic objects known as “ferromagnetic” objects, causing them to move suddenly and with great force towards the center of the MR system. This may pose a risk to the patient or anyone in the way of the object. Therefore, great care is taken to prevent ferromagnetic objects from entering the MR system room. It is vital that you remove metallic objects in advance of an MRI exam, including watches, jewelry, and items of clothing that have metallic threads or fasteners.

MRI facilities have screening procedures that, when carefully followed, will ensure that the MRI technologist and radiologist knows about the presence of metallic implants and materials so that special precautions can be taken (see below). In some unusual cases the examination may be canceled because of concern related to a particular implant or device. For example, if an MRI is ordered, it may be cancelled if the patient has a ferromagnetic aneurysm clip because of the risk dislodging the clip from the blood vessel. Also, the magnetic field of the scanner can damage an external hearing aid or cause a heart pacemaker to malfunction. If you have a bullet or other metallic fragment in your body there is a potential risk that it could change position, possibly causing injury.

DIS is an accredited facility in MRI, meeting or exceeding the standards set by the American College of Radiology for quality, patient safety, reporting and technological expertise. Your safety is our priority.

To understand, in basic terms, the facets of MRI, view the short message below.