MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

MRI Studies Offered:
  • Spine (Cervical, Thoracic, Lumbar)
  • Knee
  • Shoulder
  • Wrist
  • Foot/Ankle/Toes
  • Elbow/Hand/Fingers
  • Pelvis
  • Hips
  • Brain/Pituitary/Orbits
  • Soft Tissue Neck
At iCare MRI - Diagnostic Imaging in Brooklyn Center, MN, we utilize a "short bore" 1.5 tesla MRI scanner system allowing "High-Field, High Resolution" images without compromising image quality. Most patients are surprised and feel an open feeling since our magnet room has windows to the natural light as well as a shorter bore magnet so claustrophobic patients can feel comfortable. The table accommodates patients up to 400 pounds. The coils used in the examination are flexible and allow for flexion and extension views of the cervical and lumbar spine.

Scan times range from 15-25 minutes. To further accommodate patient comfort, our scanner comes equipped with a radio as well as an intercom, so that the patient can either listen to their favorite music, or interact directly with our specialized MRI technologist. In addition, patients are welcome to have a family member or friend in the MRI suite with them during the exam. (Restrictions may apply.)

All MRI images and diagnostic reports are available to the referring physician on our secure, online web portal. Exams are available on DVD or zip drive.

Frequent Questions about Magnetic Resonance Imaging

What is an MRI?
MRI is short for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. MRI is a study that is safe and uses a magnetic field to acquire images specific images of the spine, joints, organs, blood vessels, muscles, and organs. It does not use any x-ray, and is not painful. The MRI does not use radiation, therefore the MRI process is safe for both patient and anyone else in the room that is not adversely effected by a magnetic field.
How does the MRI machine work?
The MRI machine itself works by creating a magnetic field. Radio frequency waves from the magnet cause the hydrogen cells in your body to vibrate in a certain way that is picked up by an antennae called a coil. Coils communicate to the computer in the technologist room creating an image of the body part being scanned. This image is stored in the computer and can be viewed off site by your doctor and radiologist reading the image.
Why get an MRI exam?
MRI provides an extremely detailed image of the body part that allows a physician to diagnose, and detect many conditions so that treatment can be most appropriate and effective. If there is an abnormality, the MRI can tell the doctor where the abnormality is, and to what extent it is affecting the body.
How do I prepare for My MRI exam?
Prior to your MRI appointment, you may follow your daily routine and meal plan as normal as well as all prescribed medication. Make sure all metal is removed from the body. This includes piercing, jewelry, clothing containing metal, etc. The MRI technologist will show you to a private changing room that contains a secure locker so you personal belongings are kept safe. You will be given a pair of shorts and a tee shirt so that you will be covered and comfortable. Pillows and pads are used on the table so that you are comfortable to lie still during the exam to optimize your image quality. Prior to the exam, you will be given clear directions and allowed to ask as many questions as you wish. You will be able to give the technician your music request. You will also be in the MRI technicianís sight the entire time and will be able to communicate with the MRI technician via 2-way intercom.
What are the restrictions with an MRI exam?
Because an MRI uses a high field magnet, all metal objects made with iron or steel and can effect electronic devices such as cell phones. The MRI technologist will look over your MRI screening form and will ask you specific questions for your safety. For example, you will be asked if you have a pacemaker, aneurysm clips, cochlear implants, TENS (transcutaneous electrical neurostimulator) unit, or steel surgical staples or clips.
How do I pay for the MRI exam?
Most health insurance plans cover MRI exams. Some managed care plans may require a pre-authorization or an order from you primary care physician. Prior to your arrival, we will help verify the extent of your insurance benefits coverage for your MRI exam. Any charges NOT covered by your insurance will be shared with you at the time of your visit and payment will be due at that time. We conveniently accept VISA, MasterCard, Discover Card and American Express. Please call our office if you have questions regarding your insurance coverage.
How will I learn about my MRI results?
The images from your examination will be sent to one of our radiologists who has expertise in reading the results of your exam. They will be communicated to your physician or chiropractor, who will then discuss the results with you.