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DD3 (8) has to have an MRI

(6 Posts)
tkband3 Thu 06-Feb-14 22:14:27

DD3 has been suffering with bad headaches and dizziness, accompanied by nausea and tummy pain for a few weeks now. After our second visit to the GP yesterday, she was referred to a consultant. We're lucky enough to have private health cover from DH's work, and I got an appointment for today. The paediatrician did a very thorough examination and couldn't find anything wrong, but said that given her symptoms, which DD3 describes very clearly and eloquently, he wanted to do an MRI scan to be 100% sure.

He said that she wouldn't need sedating for the scan, but I'm unsure about this. DH had an MRI last year and said it was awful - being enclosed for 10-15 minutes combined with a really loud constant banging noise was almost more than he could bear and he'd be very surprised if DD3, who is very nervous and anxious (she's terrified of the wind we've been experiencing recently for example) would cope with it.

If you've had a child of a similar age go through this, did they have some form of sedation to relax them? Does anyone have any recommendations for how to get DD3 through this? She seems quite unfazed by it so far, but I don't know whether to show her pictures of MRI scanners in advance in an attempt to prepare her, or whether this would simply make her more anxious. Any advice would be gratefully received!

minmooch Fri 07-Feb-14 07:05:53

My son was just before his 16th birthday when he had his first of many MRI's. Apparently children cope better with them than adults. Your dd will be given ear plugs to reduce the noise and the people doing the MRI will talk to her throughout it. My DS usually falls asleep during his - although it's noisy it's a repetitive noise that lulls you into closing your eyes. I sit in the room with my DS.

demi43 Fri 07-Feb-14 07:20:03

My DD had an MRI scan on her head when she was 7. She had a general anaesthetic, the paediatrician recommended that she had this. I remember this meant that we had to wait a few extra weeks...quicker if you just have scan without anaesthetic obviously. Having had an MRI myself, I don't think my daughter would have coped v well with the noise & not being able to move at all. I know my nephew had one aged 5 without any anaesthetic etc but he was extremely laid back & used to go to the hospital a lot which maybe helped.

anywinewilldo Fri 07-Feb-14 14:31:12

My DD had a brain MRI aged 7 without any sedation. Just explained to her it would be noisy and she had to keep really still. She had music in her headphones and I was allowed to hold her hand and talk her through it. She was absolutely fine. It's not that bad, but I think it depends on how you think your child will be - I would try to avoid a general anaesthetic if possible!

DrewsWife Fri 07-Feb-14 14:39:04

My daughter had an MRI when she was seven. I explained it thoroughly and told her that It wa super important for her to lie still. They gave her a choice of DVDs and she watched something on their screen.

She had several MRI scans in a few years which was to chart her arthritis. She is now nearly 18

As long as you explain it, let her know the need and reason for lying still. She will be fine. As for the banging noise. Kids are more tolerant of that than adults

tkband3 Fri 07-Feb-14 17:31:36

Thanks everyone for the information. I've spoken to the hospital today and they don't sedate children for MRIs, so that decision is taken out of my hands. They've told me I can be in the room with her and she can listen to whatever she wants to on the headphones - they didn't mention a DVD, but maybe we'll take one just in case they're able to play it, otherwise it'll be me being sent loopy by the One Direction CD she'll no doubt want to listen to! Apparently it'll only last 15-20 minutes so hopefully it won't be too bad.

Thanks once again for your help.

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