About the Scan – MR Scan for Extremities

SMIL offers MR scans for the body’s extremities to examine joints, tendons, muscles and vessels in the following areas of the body:

  • Neck
  • Spine
  • Shoulder
  • Elbows
  • Wrist
  • Hip
  • Pelvis
  • Knee
  • Ankle

A MR scan gives clear views of these parts of the body to help diagnose or evaluate:

  • Degenerative joint disorders such as arthritis and labral tears.
  • Joint abnormalities, due to trauma, such as tears of ligaments and tendons.
  • Sports related injuries and work-related disorders caused by repeated strain, forceful impact or vibration.
  • Infections
  • Tumors involving bones and joints
  • Pain, swelling or bleeding in the tissues in and around the joints.
  • Decreased motion of the shoulder joint.

MR scan, you will be positioned on the moveable examination table. Straps and bolsters may be used to help you stay still and maintain the correct position during imaging.

Devices that contain coils capable of sending and receiving radio waves may be placed around or adjacent to the area of the body being studied.

If a contrast material will be used in the MRI exam, an intravenous (IV) catheter, also known as an IV line will be inserted into a vein in your hand or arm. A saline solution may be used. The solution will drip through the IV to prevent blockage of the IV catheter until the contrast material is injected.

You will be moved into the magnet of the MRI unit and the SMIL radiologist and technologist will leave the room while the MRI examination is performed. If a contrast material is used during the examination, it will be injected into the intravenous line (IV) after an initial series of scans. Additional series of images will be taken during or following the injection.

When the examination is completed, you may be asked to wait until the SMIL technologist or radiologist checks the images in case additional images are needed.

Your intravenous line will be removed.

MRI exams generally include multiple runs (sequences), some of which may last several minutes. The entire examination is usually completed within 30 to 45 minutes.

Learn more about how to prepare for a bone and muscle MR scan in the preparations for a MR scan of the extremities section.

Find out if a bone and muscle MR scan is right for you in the benefits and risks of a MR scan of the extremities section.

For a downloadable/printable PDF about this exam with preparation instructions click here.

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