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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)


Beaumont is committed to providing high quality MRI imaging services with a focus on patient and family centered care. We offer:

  • ease of scheduling by contacting our access center
  • many convenient locations for MRI imaging in South East Michigan.
  • board certified Beaumont radiologists to interpret your results.
  • committed to providing the most up-to-date imaging technology
  • highly trained technologists to ensure your comfort and safety 
  • an integrated electronic medical records system that allows your Beaumont Health care team to promptly see your images.

What is Magnetic Resonance Imaging?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a strong magnet and radio waves to provide clear and detailed diagnostic images of internal body organs and tissues. MRI is a valuable tool for the diagnosis of a broad range of conditions, including cancer, heart and vascular disease, stroke and musculoskeletal disorders. MRI allows evaluation of some body structures that may not be as visible with other diagnostic imaging methods such as X-ray, Ultrasound or CT scan.

How does an MRI scan work?

  • The patient is placed on a table within an active magnetic field. Pulses of radio waves (a loud knocking noise) are created within the scanner.
  • Your body is made of tiny bits of matter called atoms; at the center of each atom is a nucleus. The radio waves move the nuclei of the atoms in your body out of their normal position.
  • As the nuclei realign into proper position, they send out radio signals.
  • The signals are received by a computer that converts them into an image.
  • The images are interpreted by a board certified radiologist and the results are sent to your ordering physician.

What will I experience during my MRI?

Before you have any medical imaging procedure, you should discuss the risks and benefits with your physician.

  • You will be asked to remove any clothing, jewelry or other metal objects that may cause a potential safety or quality risk during your exam. The imaging department will provide you with the appropriate attire for the MRI scan. This is a Beaumont Health policy to ensure your safety during the exam. 
  • An MRI staff member will position you on the exam table. Likely, you will be lying flat on your back. Straps, pillows, and other positioning devices may be used to help you maintain the correct position during the test, to make you as comfortable as possible during your exam.
  • The MRI technologist will be in an adjacent room where the scanner controls are located. However, you will be in constant sight of the technologist through a window. An intercom inside the MRI scanner will help the technologist communicate instructions and messages to you throughout the exam. You will also have a call button to let the technologists know if you have any concerns during the test.
  • During the MRI, there will be a knocking noise in the machine as the pulses of radio waves are created within the scanner. You will be given ear plugs and/or headphones to minimize the noises from the MRI scanner.
  • It is important that you remain very still during the examination. Depending on the body part being scanned, you may be asked to hold your breath for short periods of time.
  • If contrast is required for your MRI, pre-contrast images will be obtained. Contrast will be administered through an intravenous line; followed by post-contrast images.
  • If you have claustrophobia, you can request to have the test done on a wide-bore or an open bore magnet, designed to help minimize claustrophobia
  • Oral sedative medication or anesthesia are options to discuss with your physician prior to scheduling your exam.
  • Your Beaumont doctor will have access to the images and the radiologist's interpretation and will share the results with you. The report can also be accessed through myBeaumontChart.org 

Types of MRI scanners

Standard Bore

Standard MRI

  • 60 cm Bore diameter

Wide Bore

Wide Bore

  • 70 cm Bore diameter
  • designed to reduce claustrophobia

Open Bore

Open Bore

  • available only at our Macomb location

Preparing for an MRI

When scheduling your MRI exam, you may receive special instructions regarding preparation for your MRI dependent upon the type of MRI scheduled. You may be asked to not eat or drink before the exam. You will be asked to remove any medication patches, insulin pumps and/ or monitors.  

If you have completed your MRIonline safety form, print and bring a copy to your appointment. 

Before your MRI exam, remove all accessories including hair pins, jewelry, eyeglasses, hearing aids, wigs and dentures. During the exam, these metal objects may interfere with the magnetic field, affecting the quality of the MRI images taken. For your safety, notify your technologist if you have:

  • Any removable prosthesis
  • Heart pacemaker, defibrillator or artificial heart value
  • Loop recorders (Download data before arriving to appointment)
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Any metal plates, pins, screws or surgical staples in your body
  • Tattoos and permanent make-up
  • A bullet or shrapnel in your body, or ever worked with metal
  • If you might be pregnant or suspect you may be pregnant

Cinema Vision

Some of our locations also offer Cinema Vision googles for use during MRI procedures. The goggles may help reduce MRI claustrophobia.  During the procedure, the goggles help patients forget about their surroundings as they watch a DVD, TV or listen to music. Cinema Vision can also help children remain still during the procedure.