Patient Information

To prepare for your exam, please follow the instructions indicated below. If there are any questions about how you should prepare for your exam, please contact the facility. Please follow the instructions given by your doctor's office if they differ from those listed.

Patient Guide

What is an MRI Scan?

An MRI scan is a diagnostic imaging study that allows your physician to look inside your body without the use of radiation, x-rays or surgery. The MRI uses magnetism and radio waves to produce pictures of your head, spine and other parts of your body. These images are used to distinguish normal, healthy soft tissue from unhealthy, pathological tissue. Depending on what information your doctor needs, the MRI scan may require the use of a contrast agent given intravenously to assist in visualizing certain structures in your body. The system produces a knocking sound which represents that the exam is proceeding as required.

Preparing for an MRI

No special preparation is needed prior to the exam unless your doctor has given you other instructions. You will be asked to complete a health history form so we can proceed with your exam in a safe manner. You will be asked to remove all: jewelry, watches, hairpins, glasses, wallets keys, piercings, nylon tights, credit cards, phone cards and other metallic objects. An MRI works with a strong magnet. Please tell us if you have any of the following: aneurysm clip, cardiac pacemaker, implanted cardioverter defibrillator, electronic implant or device, magnetically-activated implant or device, neurostimulation system, spinal cord stimulator, cochlear implant or implanted hearing aid, insulin or infusion pump, Implanted drug infusion device, any type of prosthesis or implant, artificial or prosthetic limb, any metallic fragment or internal metallic object, hearing aid.

What Happens During an MRI?

The scan will take approximately 30 to 45 minutes depending on the type scan your physician ordered. Our MRI system allows your head to stay outside the magnet bore during most examinations except head or neck exams. The technologist will position you on a padded table and the table will then slide into the scanner. You will always be able to speak with the technologist through a speaker. The system produces a knocking sound which represents that the exam is proceeding as required.

Finding Out the Results

Our Board Certified Radiologist will study your examination and will send the report to your physician within 24 hours. Your physician will discuss the results with you and explain how the findings relate to your health.

Getting Copies of Your MRI/Report

After your physician has explained the results of your MRI exam to you, you can request a copy of your report and/or images by contacting the appropriate facility. If you need a copy of your report and/or images sent to another doctor, we will be happy to do that for you.

Treatment Instructions

Abdominal Ultrasound

Approximate Exam Time: 30 minutes

Do not eat or drink after 12:00 midnight the night before exam.

Barium Enema (X-ray of the colon)

Approximate Exam Time: 45 minutes

Day before exam: Follow the 24 hour instructions in the Barium Enema prep kit Night before exam: Take only clear liquids or Ensure. You can have coffee or tea WITHOUT cream. Clear fruit juices are fine (apple or cranberry juice). NO orange or tomato.

CT of the Abdomen or Pelvis with Contrast

Approximate Exam Time: 30-45 minutes

  1. No food or drink 4 hours prior to the exam
  2. Patient should arrive 1 hour before the procedure is to start. Oral contrast will be given at that time.
  3. Intravenous contrast will be administered during the procedure.
CT of all other areas

Approximate Exam Time: 15-45 minutes

Do not eat or drink one hour before exam.

Gallbladder Series (oral Cholecystogram)

Approximate Exam Time: 30 minutes

  1. Eat a light supper with no fats (no cream, butter, eggs or fatty meats).
  2. 2. After supper take twelve gallbladder tablets (Telepaque).
  3. 3. No food or drink until after exam (no breakfast).
G.I. Series (X-ray of the stomach)

Approximate Exam Time: 30 minutes

Do not eat or drink anything (no water) after 12 midnight the night before the test.

IVP (X-ray of the Kidneys)

Approximate Exam Time: 1 hour

  1. BE Prep Kit
  2. Do not eat or drink anything (no water) after 12 midnight the night before the exam.

Approximate Exam Time: 20 minutes

Day of exam: Do not wear deodorant, lotion or talcum powder in the breast area or under arms.


Approximate Exam Time: 30-90 minutes

Because MRI uses a strong magnetic field, metal objects will interfere with the scan. For your convenience we have a locker to store your barrettes, jewelry, credit cards, etc. Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing.

Pelvic and/or OB Ultrasound

Approximate Exam Time: 30 minutes

VERY IMPORTANT! Drink one quart of water one hour prior to exam and DO NOT urinate.