home
RSS
October 26th, 2011
06:01 PM ET

Don't get hurt by an MRI

MRI machines allow doctors to see inside your body and diagnose what’s wrong with you, but if mistakes are made, they can hurt or even kill you.

“If administered properly, it’s one of the safest exams that have ever been invented,” says Tobias Gilk, an MRI safety advocate.

But accidents do happen.

“Most errors are a combination of human error and bad timing,” says Dr. Emanuel Kanal, a professor of radiology and neuroradiology at the University of Pittsburgh. Faulty training and lax rules about who can be around the machine also contribute.

There are four main ways MRI machines can pose dangers.

Projectiles:
The M in MRI stands for magnetic, and  magnets are very powerful.

Gilk’s website, mrimetaldetector.com, shows photos of metal objects, including a bed, a floor polisher and a chair forced against the MRI machine.

If someone is being scanned when these devices fly into a machine, they could face serious injuries. A child in New York was killed in 2001 when the MRI machine sucked an oxygen canister into the machine where he was being scanned.

“Projectiles usually happen when there are breakdowns in policies and procedures and proper training wasn’t performed,” says Frank Shellock, an adjunct clinical professor of radiology and medicine at the University of Southern California. He points out that MRI magnets don’t just turn on when they are scanning. They are always energized and there is no visual cue the magnetic field is present. Newer MRI machines can be even more powerful.

Burns:
MRIs use RF transmitters and those can cause heat. “Burns happen, usually because a patient wasn’t prepared properly,” Shellock says. “Usually this is related to misuse of equipment.”

“Generally it is supposed to be gentle, like a heat lamp,” says Gilk. “If there are electrical conductors like an EKG lead (on the body) it becomes an antenna and can pick up the RF and concentrate it.”

Touching the side walls of the MRI tunnel can also lead to burns, Shellock says. MRI operators should put material between the patient and the wall if there is a risk of the patient coming in contact with it. Some burns have been so severe patients have required skin grafts.

Hearing loss:
MRI machines can be quite loud.

Gilk compares getting a scan to standing near a  jet aircraft. He says patients and anyone else near the machine should be given adequate earplugs or protective earphones.

“Scanner technology is improving and machines are getting quieter,” Gilk says, but “anyone in the room could get hearing loss.”

Implants and medical devices:
People with metal in their bodies, including medical devices like aneurysm clips and pacemakers, can face increased risks. The MRI’s powerful magnetic fields could move the device or cause damage.

“Most medical device manufacturer's products made in the last five years will be OK,” says Gilk. But, “if, for example, you had an aneurysm clip that is 15 years old, you should be particularly cautious.”

Shellock says he has studied 3,500 implant devices over about the last 25 years and the devices that are labeled as appropriate for use in an MRI should be fine.

In addition to the medical metal inside the human body, some patients require external devices to keep them alive or monitor their condition. Those devices need to be specifically designed to function around an MRI.

The federal government doesn’t regulate the use of MRIs and state regulations for the machines vary.

“Many states have more stringent requirements for hair colorists than who runs an MRI center,” Gilk says.

So what can patients do to make sure they are safe when they get an MRI?

1. Fill out MRI questionnaire: “Patients should fill out a screening form and ask the MRI technologist if they have questions,” Shellock says. It’s important that patients go over the questions with the technician to make sure they understand what is being asked.

Kanal says honest answers are essential. He gives the example that a patient might not want to reveal they have a wig, but it’s important for the operator to know.

Details about any metal that may be in the body, including bullets, medical devices like aneurysm clips, stents or pacemakers should also be shared with the operator.

2. Remove metal: Since magnetic metal poses such a risk in an MRI, it is essential patients and anyone near the MRI remove it.

3. Use hearing protection: Make sure you and anyone else in the room with you are given proper ear protection and make sure it fits.

4. Look for open doors: MRI facilities should be secure. Gilk says open doors could be a sign the facility isn’t as careful about access as it should be.

5. Look for wires: Make sure there are no unexpected wires or metallic objects like left over EKG sensors on your body. Some devices may be safe for an MRI, but others can be dangerous.

6. Don’t touch the side walls: Coming in contact with the inside of the MRI tube can lead to burns.


soundoff (3,280 Responses)
  1. Nearby RV Repairs

    http://dex.hu/x.php?id=index_belfold_cikklink&url=https://rvmarketingexperts.com

    June 22, 2021 at 07:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. pharmaceptica

    heart rate watch walmart https://www.pharmaceptica.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 07:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Sprinter Repair Orange County

    You're so interesting! I do not think I've read through a single thing like that before. So wonderful to find another person with some genuine thoughts on this subject. Seriously.. many thanks for starting this up. This website is something that's needed on the web, someone with some originality!

    http://dnaconsultation.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.rocks

    June 22, 2021 at 08:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. RV Window Repair Near Me

    https://www.bing.com/news/apiclick.aspx?ref=FexRss&aid=&url=https://orangecountyrvrepair.com&cc=gr

    June 22, 2021 at 09:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Sprinter Repair Orange County

    That is a very good tip particularly to those new to the blogosphere. Brief but very accurate infoÖ Many thanks for sharing this one. A must read post!

    http://www.ratsoff.net/blog/nav?to=http://ocrvcenter.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 09:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Southern California Sprinter Repair

    http://www.chooseabrunette.com/cgi-bin/out.cgi?id=kitty&url=http://campervanrepairshop.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 09:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. https://topphimhot.net

    Best view i have ever seen !

    https://images.google.com.cu/url?q=https://topphimhot.net

    June 22, 2021 at 09:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Nearby RV Repairs

    An intriguing discussion is worth comment. I do think that you need to write more on this subject, it may not be a taboo subject but typically people do not speak about such issues. To the next! Many thanks!!

    http://ww31.blogtap.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvmotorsports.co

    June 22, 2021 at 11:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Sprinter Van Mechanic

    http://sintesi.cittametropolitana.ba.it/portale/linkclick.aspx?link=https://fleetvehiclerepairshop.com

    June 22, 2021 at 11:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Emelia Streets

    http://nanhuh.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=nearme.a2hosted.com/digital-marketing-agency-near-me-now

    June 22, 2021 at 12:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. meat eater podcast

    bookmarked!!, I love your web site!

    http://www.kitchencabinetsdirectory.com/redirect.asp?url=https://backbonehunters.com

    June 22, 2021 at 15:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Sprinter Van Repair Facilities

    http://factorylogic.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=sprintervanrepair.com

    June 22, 2021 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. RV Repair Service Near Me

    http://defensecareers.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 15:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. RV Repair Shop Near Me

    http://downtownmuseum.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 15:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. RV Sales And Repair Near Me

    https://www.moonbbs.com/dm/dmlink.php?dmurl=https://ocrvshop.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 16:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Rv Mechanic

    http://extremespeed.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=fleetservicerepairshop.com

    June 22, 2021 at 17:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. RV Air Conditioner Repair Near Me

    http://nudeandfresh.com/cgi-bin/atx/out.cgi?id=22&tag=galtoplist&trade=https://ocrvluxurycoaches.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 17:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. RV Parts And Repair Near Me

    http://www.emptycage.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.co

    June 22, 2021 at 17:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Internet Marketing Consultant

    Oh my goodness! Amazing article dude! Thanks, However I am going through troubles with your RSS. I donít understand the reason why I am unable to subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting the same RSS issues? Anyone who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanks!!

    http://www.tax-solutionsgroup.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 17:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. RV Trailer Repair Near Me

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who had been conducting a little homework on this. And he actually ordered me breakfast simply because I found it for him... lol. So allow me to reword this.... Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending time to talk about this topic here on your website.

    http://wbkofox.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 17:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. RV Repair Near Here

    https://www.motownindia.com/AdRedirector.aspx?ad=59&target=http://ocrvcenter.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 18:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Camper RV Repair Near Me

    http://nordicwooddesigns.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.online

    June 22, 2021 at 18:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Content Marketing Business

    Itís hard to find well-informed people for this subject, however, you sound like you know what youíre talking about! Thanks

    http://www.careerkids.biz/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 19:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Internet Marketing Agencies Near Me

    http://www.herefordholdings.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=consciousgrowthmarketing.com

    June 22, 2021 at 19:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. megyn kelly podcast

    http://sherlock.scribblelive.com/r?u=https://backbonehunters.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 19:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. matt and shane secret podcast

    Great information. Lucky me I came across your site by accident (stumbleupon). I've book-marked it for later!

    http://doconcepts.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=backbonehunters.com

    June 22, 2021 at 20:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. SEO Marketing Firms

    http://bcbsri.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 20:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. RV Mobile Repair Service Near Me

    http://ddfconsulting.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.ocrvcenter.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 21:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. RV Air Conditioner Repair Near Me

    I couldnít refrain from commenting. Exceptionally well written!

    http://www.hi10spro.blogspto.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 21:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. www.pharmaceptica.com

    discount erectile dysfunction medications https://pharmaceptica.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 22:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. tigerbelly podcast

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who had been doing a little research on this. And he in fact ordered me lunch because I discovered it for him... lol. So allow me to reword this.... Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending some time to discuss this matter here on your blog.

    http://www.mediareport.org/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.backbonehunters.com

    June 22, 2021 at 23:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. RV Glass Repair Near Me

    Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post! It's the little changes that make the greatest changes. Thanks a lot for sharing!

    http://delawarebusinessbankruptcy.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.us

    June 22, 2021 at 23:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. science friday podcast

    This web site truly has all of the info I needed about this subject and didnít know who to ask.

    http://initsimage.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=backbonehunters.com

    June 22, 2021 at 23:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Google Marketing Specialists

    Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon everyday. It will always be useful to read articles from other authors and practice a little something from their sites.

    http://mublog.ru/redirect.php?https://consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 22, 2021 at 23:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. RV Repair Center Near Me

    http://eoalliance.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 23:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. RV Fridge Repair Near Me

    http://klamathbasin.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 22, 2021 at 23:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Social Media Marketing Near Me

    https://ma.by/away.php?url=http://consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 23, 2021 at 00:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Digital Marketing Near Me

    http://www.fullerccim.com/Dot_EmailFriend.asp?referURL=https://www.consciousgrowthmarketing.com

    June 23, 2021 at 00:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. RV Appliance Repair Near Me

    https://www.livoloeurope.eu/catalog/view/theme/_ajax_view-product.php?product_href=http://www.ocrvcenter.com

    June 23, 2021 at 00:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Local Marketing Near Me

    http://www.q-bling.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=consciousgrowthmarketing.com

    June 23, 2021 at 01:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. RV Mobile Repair Near Me

    https://register.aib.gov.uk/Subscribe/WidgetSignup?url=https://ocrvcenter.mobi/

    June 23, 2021 at 01:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. RV Repair Near My Location

    Spot on with this write-up, I truly believe this web site needs a great deal more attention. Iíll probably be returning to read through more, thanks for the info!

    http://www.pallmallpeople.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 23, 2021 at 02:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. RV Window Repair Near Me

    https://www.mnogo.ru/out.php?link=http://ocrvcenter.com

    June 23, 2021 at 02:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. RV Repair Shops Near Me

    Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It's always exciting to read content from other writers and use something from other websites.

    http://www.mosaicfn.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 23, 2021 at 03:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Social Media Marketing Services Near Me

    bookmarked!!, I love your website!

    https://www.asensetranslations.com/modules/babel/redirect.php?newlang=en_US&newurl=https://consciousgrowthmarketing.com/

    June 23, 2021 at 03:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. RV Awning Repair Near Me

    http://chinabestwestern.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com

    June 23, 2021 at 03:24 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62

Leave a Reply to New Forklift Parts California


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.