Understanding Open MRI

Medical testing of any kind can be quite anxiety-inducing for a variety of reasons. The road to a proper diagnosis takes time and often includes a variety of procedures needed to fully understand what is happening. The waiting and unanswered questions takes a toll on the patient, and the stress only increases when the test itself is exceedingly unpleasant. This desire to reduce patient stress is largely responsible for the growing popularity of an open mri machine.

Open vs. Closed MRI

Open MRI
A closed, or traditional, MRI requires that the patient lie inside a dark, narrow tube for a long period of time while the machine scans the body. At times, the machine may make a variety of noises as it works. The experience can be harrowing for the patient, most notably in the form of claustrophobia due to the tightly-enclosed space. An Open MRI is an excellent alternate option for many since, as the name implies, the patient is scanned in a more open setting. Symptoms of claustrophobia are greatly reduced, allowing the patient to feel less stress leading up to and during the exam. Lastly, the open MRI is more adaptable in that it can accommodate a wider range of body types and sizes that would otherwise cause challenges in a closed machine.

Purpose of an MRI

One of the most important elements of an MRI is its versatility in the types of diagnoses it can perform. It is designed to provide a full body scan and can take detailed images of virtually any part of the body, including the brain and spinal cord, heart and blood vessels, bones and joints, and a number of organs. Common ailments MRIs look for include cancer, stroke, signs of an impending/damage cause by a heart attack, and nerve or disc damage to the spine.

Many adults will seek a diagnosis via an MRI scan at some point in their lives. As technology continues to improve, so too will the quality of the patient experience.

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