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MRI What is it?

I am sure that 99.9% of the members here have heard the term MRI. Hopefully, almost that same amount knows what it is.
But, I just wanted to give you some more facts about MRIs and show they are not all created equally.

MRI - Magnetic Resonance Imaging. is a scanner that has a very strong magnet. The patient lies in the unit and radio waves are used to send signals to the body and then back. Then they are converted into images by a computer attached to the MRI unit.

The major differences in MRI is in the strength of the magnet itself.

MRI's have been around about 20 years. The strength is determined by a T value.

The strength can range from a .025T to the newest 3T strength. The units themselves can also range in size, bore opening and open bore. The 3T MRI can take images faster and clearer than slower units. However, there is a price to pain. The 3T generate more heat and are noisier than smaller units.

The older MRI units were generally no stronger than 1T. Those units also had a very small bore opening, so that the patient was very cramped inside. Take a look at some of my humor in Ways to enjoy your mri

Today, the standard is 1.5T, which has a much wider bore opening. My last 8 or 10 MRIs were done on this type of machine. I could almost turn my body around inside the tube and the upper portion of the tube was a good distance away.

Then you have the true open-bore unit. This is where you generally stand up and the machine is open on all 4 sides. Those machines started out a .2T for a long time, then slowly increased to a .7T and now some units may be at 1.25T. So, overall, the image quality of these units is not as crisp as those with 1.5T or greater strength.

You can look at the MRI strengths like this:

< 1.0T Smart Car
1.25T Volkswagen Beetle
1.50T Honda Accord
3.00 Toyota Land Cruiser
Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,476
    ....MRI....Very funny!

    And I didn't understand the T value strengths before.
    You made it easy to understand
    Thanks for the info!
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

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