For those who are undergoing an MRI exam for the first time, and even those who are undergoing an MRI again, it can be difficult to remember what you should bring to your appointment.
By focusing on what an MRI is, what your exam will be like, and the many other factors regarding your actual injury, it often helps to follow some sort of MRI checklist to ensure that you bring everything you might need and leave the things you don’t. So, if you are one of those patients who need an extra hand remembering what they should bring and what they shouldn’t, here’s a quick guide to help –
1. The items you should bring:
· A referral paper from your doctor or medical advisor. This is often something MRI centers require to be on file, so it might help your appointment run on time by preventing a phone call.
· Previous radiology imaging or medical records that might be relevant to your appointment. This includes a list of your current medications. This also includes any records containing information in regards to implants of any kind as well as any other pertinent information.
· Form of payment as well as your insurance information. While they can usually look this up or bill you afterward, bringing these two things always makes things move along more smoothly.
· A proper form of ID. This should be automatic, but sometimes it can be easy to forget.
· Comfortable clothing. MRIs are known for being uncomfortable and lasting longer than expected, so making sure you wear a simple and comfortable outfit. The doctors might ask you to change into a medical gown if your clothing has any materials that might interfere with the machine.
· Music and headphones. While some centers can provide these to patients, it is always best to be safe and bring some music and headphones with you. After all, your options will probably fit your interests better this way.
· A friend or a loved one. Even if you are not scared or uncomfortable, it is always best to have someone come along to support you. This is especially true if you have any concerns that you might feel uncomfortable during the exam.
2. The items you should not bring:
· Valuables. You will not be able to wear your jewelry or watches into your exam because of the magnetic fields used in the MRI, so it is best to leave these things at home where they are definitely safe.
· Flashing clothing. Not only will your MRI be lengthy and slightly uncomfortable, but any zippers, buttons, or other material that might interfere with the quality and the safety of the MRI scan will make it so you have to change into a medical gown.
· Makeup and hairspray. These might seem insignificant, but if there are any metal particles in your makeup or hairspray it will also interfere with the quality of your scan, so you should avoid putting any on for the day.
At the end of the day, there is no checklist that will provide every patient with precise instructions for what to bring and what not to bring, but this list will certainly provide many with a good basis. In the end, it is up to every patient on what they feel comfortable bringing and leaving, but it is important to remember that most guidelines are made to ensure the best possible procedure. So, if you see something on this list that you are unsure about, or do not see something on this list that you are considering bringing or leaving, never hesitate to contact your doctor to discuss it more in depth.
If you are in need of an MRI appointment, schedule one online with us at Northeast Nebraska Imaging, or call us at (402) 844-8187. We will answer any questions about what to bring to your MRI appointment and anything regarding MRI preparation.