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About Your MRI at Avera Marshall Imaging Center

Before your Test:

  • You may be instructed to have x-rays before your test to screen for any metal fragments in the area of interest.
  • Arrive 10 minutes early to check in at the Business Office.
  • Many scans take approximately 20 minutes. Plan on being in the department up to 60 minutes to include time for reconstruction of images, asking any questions you have, changing clothes if necessary, etc.
  • Please wear two-piece loose-fitting clothing that does not have any metal buttons, zippers, snaps, etc.
  • Hearing aides can not be worn into the exam area. The magnet may ruin them.
  • Depending on the type of exam you are scheduled for, you may be asked to remove any makeup, as it may contain some metal.
  • You will be asked to remove any kind of jewelry (watches, necklaces, earrings) or any object that may contain metal.
  • You will be asked to leave any cards with magnetic strips, such as credit cards, drivers license, etc. outside the exam room. The magnet will erase any information.
  • You will be asked some questions about your medical history.

Tell your Technologist if:

  • You are PREGNANT or could be pregnant
  • You have had any previous surgeries
  • You have an implanted insulin pump or any other infusion pump
  • You have a pacemaker or any other implants
  • You have metal fragments in your eyes
  • You work with metal (metal workers, grinding, welding)
  • You have any metal shrapnel, screws, pins, plates, or surgical staples
  • You have any tattoos or permanent cosmetics
  • You have dentures, hearing aids, or hairpins
  • You are claustrophobic (afraid of confined spaces)

During your Test:

  • You will lie down an a comfortable tableĀ 
  • Your technologist may use straps and coils to help the area being scanned remain still and in the correct position
  • The table will slide into the scanner when it is time to start the exam and out when it is over.
  • While inside the scanner you may hear drumming or thumping noises when the machine is creating images
  • You may listen to your favorite music artist or the radio during your exam. Bring your own CD if you wish.
  • You may be asked to hold your breath during some procedures
  • If contrast is needed, the technologist will inject it through an IV
  • The technologist will observe you through a window during your scan. She can hear and speak to you at all times using a two-way intercom. You will have a call button to hold as well.

After your Test:

  • You may go back to your normal activities
  • If you are given contrast, it will naturally pass through your body within a day
  • If IV contrast was used, be sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day to flush it out of your system
  • Your doctor will discuss the results with you during a follow-up appointment or over the phone

IV ContrastĀ 

IV contrast will be injected through the IV that was started by your technologist. While it is being injected you may feel cool and maybe a little flushed. These symptoms will last only a few minutes. If you are having trouble breathing or feel nauseated tell your technologist.

Additional Information

For more information, contact the Avera Marshall Imaging Center at 1-877-537-9189.