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MRI scan for me on thursday - anyone had one?

22 replies

enid · 04/10/2004 13:41

I am booked in for an MRI scan on thursday (have damaged my neck - by swivelling round screaming at kids in car ). I am getting a bit nervous now - has anyone had one and know what they entail?

OP posts:
MUMINAMILLION · 04/10/2004 13:46

I'm sure that's what I had for my epilepsy. It involved lying on a bed and being pushed into a big tube thing. They closed me in and flashed lights off and on, whilst I kept my eyes open. I don't know if yours will be any different, but it was completely painless and a bit boring really! I was in there for a minute or so, not for long. Nothing to worry about.

Yorkiegirl · 04/10/2004 13:46

Message withdrawn

prufrock · 04/10/2004 13:47

Yes - mine was on my knee, but your entire body goes in. You have to wear a gown, and take off all jewellery (no metal allowed), and you can't have it if you've got a pacemaker or any metal screws etc in your body.
Then they jsut lie you down on a bed and position you correctly depending on what tehy want to see, you have to stay still so they can get decent pics. the bed moves into the machine (liek a big doughnut - you are in the hole, but it's not too small so not really very claustraphobic. You are left alone in the room, I think mine took about 5 minutes, and then tehy come in and help you off the bed and youare free. You don't feel anything. Stop worrying.

bakedpotato · 04/10/2004 13:52

i had one about 8 months ago. the injury was only to my hand/wrist, but i still had to get way up inside the machine (it looked like a huge white tube... you lie on a gurney thing which gets winched inside slowly) and hold very still for 20 mins. i was on my tummy with arm stretched above my head... it wasn't lovely.

however, someone had recommended tranquillisers and my gp prescribed this in advance, tempazepam i think. i'm mildly claustraphobic, or thought i might be, and this really did take the edge off. i think he prescribed 3 tablets but i only took one beforehand and felt lovely and drunkish, which lasted a few hours (you need an escort to and from hosp if you opt for the tranq, i think).

i heartily recommend going that route if you're apprehensive. hope your neck gets sorted out

Mum2girls · 04/10/2004 13:55

I've had one too - as has been said before, completely painless and unobtrusive. Nothing to worry about. I was given headphones and the technician talked to me throughout.

binkie · 04/10/2004 14:05

I've had a couple - one as part of a bodyfat study in which I was a control (so obviously an anxiety-free experience), and once to see if they could find any reason for some nasty migraines (so I was a bit scared) (nothing found, by the way).

Even the time when I was feeling nervous about the reason for the scan, I didn't find it scary at all, & think you'll be fine so long as you don't find confined spaces very difficult - not really cramped, though - the tube you're slid into isn't much worse than a sleeper bunk on a train. The machine working sounds like some gentle growly thumps and clicks. And the technicians are always very thoughtful.

enid · 04/10/2004 14:10

what happens if you panic - can you alert anyone to get you out - I'm sure I'll be fine - reality usually better than imagination. I do have a prescription for Valium (to relax the muscle spasm) which I haven't filled yet - maybe I will!!

OP posts:
enid · 04/10/2004 14:11

Maybe I'll just pretend I'm on a sunbed

OP posts:
prufrock · 04/10/2004 14:16

Far more room than a sunbed - and somebody wayches you on monitors all the time.

efmach · 04/10/2004 17:58

Enid, you have a call bell. The scanning staff, despite being in another room, are watching you at all times through a window and communicate to you through a little speaker in the scanner. The noise isn't too bad, sounds like someone hammering. It takes a little while to do the scanning but they talk you through the stages. Good luck.

WideWebWitch · 04/10/2004 21:21

hope it goes ok enid.

wickedstepmum · 04/10/2004 22:19

What everyone has said is true - it's non-invasive and someone is in contact the whole time. But I must add my own side effect. I felt fantastic afterwards - really energised! Sheer coincidence - possibly but a lovely benefit. And they were only looking at my knee...

edam · 04/10/2004 22:41

Enid, have they mentioned that you might have to drink some stuff to make everything show up? It's late and I can't remember the correct terms, but that's what I had to do. Drink was fine, just feels a bit wierd; kind of warm and tingly, you can feel it going down. Bit like whisky, only smoother!
As everyone says, it's not an ordeal. Found it quite interesting.

Marina · 05/10/2004 13:25

No experience, but all the very best enid. Hope it puts your worries behind you.
And when you emerge from your tube, consider a Multipla. Then you will only have to rotate through 45 degrees to administer a good screeching...

secur · 05/10/2004 13:33

Message withdrawn

ScummyMummy · 05/10/2004 16:53

Good luck with the MRI, sweetie. We'll all think of you on Thursday. (V.impressed with your method of sustaining injury, btw.)

Arabica · 05/10/2004 18:23

I do feel for you as I was really worried about my MRI scan a few weeks ago. But my hospital did send a very helpful leaflet explaining the whole procedure and showing a pic of the scanner so I knew what to expect. You can find one on the net if you google MRI scanI think it's from one of the cancer sites like BACUP. Worst thing was it said you could bring your own CD to play during the scan. But when I arrived for my appt they said their player had been stolen. My scan (lower back) consisted of several scans one after the other with pauses in between. Be warned, they are noisyeach one slightly different. The first one sounded like a drill, but the last one sounded like living over a disco!
Very best of luck, and hopefully you'll get the same result as me: that there was nothing seriously wrong.

mummylove · 05/10/2004 18:44


from 16 - 19 i suffered really bad from panic attacks and aggraphobia. when it started i could not explain what was happening, panic attacks were not really heard of, besides all the usual anxiety symptoms i would feel a pressure on back of my head and my pupils were totally different sizes, one night i almost passed out, i was kept in hospital for a week, first night they said they wanted to scan me but first i had to see neurologist - i had to wait 7 days so for 7 days i thought i was dying of a brain tumor.

the scan was straight forward i lay on a bed, and a machine went over me just covering the top of my body, they had pads around my head to keep it still but because i was shaking so much they injected with god knows what (think it was to calm me down) the machine just made this clicking noise as if taking pictures whilst it revolved around my head. it did not take long, was not claustrophobic or uncomfortable so dont worry - you will be in good hands.

good luck!

mummylove · 05/10/2004 18:48

by the way - i was fine

they put it down to stress....

they were crap really, told me nothing about anxiety and how to deal with it, only found out i was having panic attacks when reading psychology books at college.

doctors know balls all about our minds!

guess im lucky i was not 16 in the 70's i might of ended up on triple dosage of lsd in a cell

Marina · 08/10/2004 15:28

Enid, not sure you're around today, but if you see this, how did it go? Hope everything was fine.

Marina · 10/10/2004 19:01

bump - Enid, how did you get on?

WideWebWitch · 10/10/2004 19:11

I was wondering too, enid, are you OK?

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