Advanced Open MRI by ASG and Wide-Bore MRI, Explained
Instead of using radiation, as an X-ray does, an MRI uses magnets and radio waves to create images based on the energy produced by hydrogen atoms in your body. An MRI, which stands for magnetic resonance imaging, is one of the most effective imaging tools available to help physicians diagnose injuries and illnesses affecting organs, muscles, tissues and ligaments.
When you think of an MRI machine, you might picture a traditional Closed MRI unit, which is a tube with an opening, or bore, that’s 23.6 inches wide, or slightly less than two feet. During a Closed MRI test, the patient, lying on a table, slides into the bore and must remain still while the machine takes images. For people who are uncomfortable in tight spaces, getting a Closed MRI can be a difficult experience, which has given MRI exams an anxiety-inducing reputation. Now, that’s changing, thanks to two different types of MRI scans available at American Health Imaging (AHI): Advanced Open MRI and Wide-Bore MRI.
What Is an Advanced Open MRI?
An Advanced Open MRI machine looks quite different from a Closed MRI unit. Instead of a narrow, enclosed tube, an Advanced Open MRI unit has two tall, semi-rounded sides with a space in between that’s open in front, in back and overhead. During exams, which last 30 to 60 minutes, patients sit, stand or lie down between the two sides of the machine while images are taken. They can watch TV or hold a friend or family member’s hand for additional comfort or reassurance.
An Advanced Open MRI assists with precision diagnosis because it can produce weight-bearing images that allow physicians to see how the force of gravity affects the area of the body in question and patients’ pain levels. Patients have the ability to bend or rotate during the exam so the machine can take images of injured tissue in different positions. That gives physicians deeper insight into the nature of the injury and how to treat it.
Advanced Open MRI is available at AHI locations in Decatur, Georgia, and San Antonio, Texas.
What Is a Wide-Bore MRI?
A Wide-Bore MRI machine is similar to a Closed MRI unit, but as its name suggests, the former has a wider opening of 27.6 inches. Patients enter a Wide-Bore MRI scanner while lying on a table, as is the case with a Closed MRI unit, but the Wide-Bore MRI machine is roomier, which increases patient comfort.
Differences Between an Advanced Open MRI and a Wide-Bore MRI
Advanced Open MRI exams and Wide-Bore MRI exams are similar in several ways, including their abilities to improve the imaging experience for patients with claustrophobia and to accommodate larger individuals. There are, however, key differences between these two types of scans, including:
- Patient position. In an Advanced Open MRI scanner, patients sit, stand or lie down, depending on the part of their body that needs to be imaged. They can also bend and rotate to give physicians more information about what the tissue looks like in different positions. In a Wide-Bore MRI scanner, patients lie on a table that slides, in whole or in part, into the bore of the machine.
- Scanner design. A Wide-Bore MRI unit looks similar to the Closed MRI machines that most people are familiar with, except the tube of the Wide-Bore MRI is more spacious. Inside, the ceiling isn’t as close to patients’ faces. An Advanced Open MRI scanner is open in front of, behind and above patients, which helps them feel less enclosed and more connected to the environment outside of the machine.
Need an MRI? Experience the benefits of an Advanced Open MRI or a Wide-Bore MRI for yourself. Schedule an appointment.