When it comes to any medical imaging device, most patients are concerned about the safety factor. Imaging devices such as X-ray machines and CT scanners use x-rays which can be deadly at very high doses. As a result of this, MRI machines are usually subjected to the same level of scrutiny.
MRI machines use a combination of radio waves and strong magnetic fields to produce an image of the body. The images of the body are quite detailed, and these machines can be used to check almost any part of the body.
Risks Associated with MRI's
Magnetic resonance imaging doesn't use ionizing radiation, unlike CT scans, and thus, patients don't have to worry about these kinds of risks. In fact, there are no hazards that have been noted yet stemming from the exposure of the body to MRIs.
However, these machines produce a strong, static magnetic field. It also produces radiofrequency energy, and there are a few concerns that are associated with both of these. These risks include:
Any magnetic object will be attracted by the strong magnetic field. This can be anything from keys and cell phones to oxygen tanks. This can damage the machine or cause injury to a staff member or a patient.
There is a change of the magnetic fields as time passes, and this produces loud noises. This noise can cause some damage to the hearing.
Radiofrequency energy can cause the body to heat up. The risk of this happening is much greater if a long examination is being carried out.
There are other risks that some patients may also face. For example, some patients find the inside of the scanner to be small, and this can induce claustrophobia.
How Experts Minimize Risks Associated with MRIs
Despite the risks associated with MRI imaging, there have been few incidents, so far, where patients' or medical personnel's lives were at risk. The risks are normally minimized by:
Carefully screening anyone who enters the room with the imaging equipment
Limiting exposure time to the MRI environment
Prescribing medication that reduces the uncomfortableness of the process etc.
How You Can Minimize Any MRI Risks
The main risk for patients is that the strong magnetic fields will turn a magnetic material into a projectile. To limit this risk, ensure that you let the experts know if there is any metal on your body. Whether it's a piercing or a something inside your body, disclosing this early is essential.
For more information, contact a company like Kenai Peninsula Imaging Center, LLC.
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