The right care starts with an accurate diagnosis. That’s where diagnostic imaging helps. Your healthcare provider may recommend Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) as a minimally invasive and painless imaging test. It creates images that help healthcare providers diagnose, treat and monitor your condition.

At Baptist Health, you can expect an MRI experience that is:

  • High-quality. Our MRI machines produce detailed images that providers rely on to form an accurate diagnosis. High-quality images lead to high-quality care.
  • Comfortable. Our large-bore MRI machines give you more room, so you stay comfortable during your imaging test. Hearing protection and music also shield you from the noise of the machine.
  • Convenient. Choose from one of our many locations in communities throughout South Florida.
  • Friendly. Our team can answer all your questions, so you know what to expect. Get guidance from board-certified radiologists and technologists who prioritize your comfort, safety and positive experience.

What is an MRI?

An MRI is a minimally invasive imaging scan that creates detailed images of the inside of your body. The MRI machine uses a powerful magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of any location in the body, including blood vessels, bones, muscles, nerves, organs and soft tissues.

An MRI machine uses three nested types of magnets to create magnetic fields. A typical MRI image shows water molecules in the body as they align with these magnetic fields. The machine can also send a magnetic pulse that temporarily deflects the water molecules, creating energy that is measured and turned into an image.
An MRI machine looks like a large tube. During an MRI, you’ll place the relevant part of your body in the center of the tube opening. Both ends of the tube stay open the entire time. Baptist Health uses large-bore MRI machines. Their wider openings offer patients more comfort and space. They can also help to alleviate any anxiety for people who may feel claustrophobic.
Healthcare providers use MRIs for many different reasons and conditions. Often, they use the detailed images of an MRI to better see something they found using ultrasound or X-ray. They may request an MRI to diagnose, treat or monitor conditions such as injuries, tumors and chronic pain.

What can I expect at my MRI appointment?

When scheduling your MRI appointment, our scheduling team will provide prep instructions, and will answer any questions. They’ll also ask about allergies, implants or any other needs you have. Depending on the body part and the purpose of your MRI, you may have special steps to follow. In general, you can expect the following experience.

    • If you feel anxious about getting an MRI, you can talk to your provider about prescribing anti-anxiety medicine.
    • Many patients may need to stop eating and drinking for two to 12 hours before the MRI. However, you can continue to take your medications as needed.
    • Because it interferes with the MRI exam, be sure to take off any jewelry and leave your valuables at home.
    • To ensure your safety, you’ll change into a gown we provide. We recommend wearing comfortable clothes you can easily remove.
    • Your imaging technologist will discuss your health history and answer any questions before you start.
    • Some patients get an MRI with contrast. A contrast dye helps certain areas show up more clearly in the MRI images. If you are having contrast, your technologist will start an IV in your vein, which creates a port for the technologist to add contrast solution into your bloodstream.
    • Your technologist will go with you into the MRI room, where you’ll lie on a table and find a comfortable position.
    • The technologist will give you hearing protection because MRI machines can make loud noises. They’ll provide earplugs and headphones so you can listen to soothing music. You’ll also have a “call ball” to squeeze when you want to communicate or take a break.
    • Before the exam starts, your technologist will go to another room where they can communicate with you over a speaker.
    • During the MRI exam, you’ll lie still on the table and breathe normally. The table will roll into the MRI, placing the part of your body that needs images into the tube. An MRI exam can take anywhere from 25 to 60 minutes, depending on the body part and purpose of the exam.
    • If you are having an MRI with contrast, you’ll start by taking MRI images without the contrast agent. Then, the technologist will add the contrast solution to your IV. You might notice a metallic taste or a cool sensation as the contrast enters your bloodstream.
  • After your MRI, you’ll leave the room and put your clothes back on. Then you can go home. If you took any anti-anxiety medicine, you should have someone else drive you home. If you had an MRI with contrast, staying hydrated for the next 24 hours will help your body process the solution. There are no limitations after an MRI, so you can resume normal activities, including eating, drinking and exercise.

    Our board-certified radiologists will interpret your test results and send them to your doctor within 24 to 48 hours. You can see them as soon as they're available through The Baptist Health PineApp.

What are the risks or side effects of an MRI?

Your Baptist Health team will do everything possible to ensure you have a comfortable and safe MRI. MRIs are minimally invasive and painless.

MRI has been studied for decades, and researchers have found it to be an extremely safe imaging test. MRI has not been proven to have biologic effects on the body, though a very small number of people have reported vertigo, nausea or a metallic taste in their mouths. While not common, here are some of the potential side effects of having an MRI exam:

  • Anxiety or claustrophobia: Our team focuses on your comfort, so we use large-bore MRI machines and offer hearing protection. However, some people may experience anxiety or claustrophobia inside the opening of the tube-shaped MRI machine. Talk to your provider about taking the right anti-anxiety medication before your exam if you think anxiety may be a problem.
  • Allergic reaction to contrast solution: While rare, some people are allergic to gadolinium, the contrast solution used for some MRIs: Allergic reactions could include nausea, skin rash or anaphylaxis (trouble breathing). Share any known allergies you have with your provider, scheduler and MRI technologist.

How do I get an MRI?

If your provider believes an MRI will help your diagnosis, treatment or care, they will prescribe it. You need a provider referral to get an MRI. Once your provider gives you a prescription, you can call Baptist Health to schedule your appointment at a convenient diagnostic imaging location.

How much does an MRI cost?

The cost of your MRI will depend on your insurance. After your provider has referred you to get an MRI, our Pre-registration and Authorization Department will confirm the price with you.

If your insurance does not cover an MRI, you can choose to self-pay. Our Central Pricing Office will work with you to arrange your payment schedule.

Schedule Your MRI Today.

We have diagnostic imaging locations from Palm Beach to Monroe County.

Baptist Health is here to support you through every stage of your health journey, beginning with getting your MRI at any of our diagnostic imaging locations. Online appointment scheduling is available for an MRI. Select a convenient location on the map to schedule.

Frequently asked questions about MRI

  • An MRI can take 25 to 60 minutes, depending on the body part and purpose of the exam.

  • Yes, most people with implants can have an MRI. However, telling your provider, scheduler and MRI technologist about your implant is important. Our team will take extra steps to ensure your safety and meet any requirements of your implant during the MRI.

  • Wear comfortable clothes you can easily remove. We will provide a gown for you to wear for your safety. Because they can interfere with the MRI, do not wear any jewelry or accessories, metal or otherwise.

  • You will get your MRI results in 24 to 48 hours. The fastest and easiest way to see your results is through the PineApp. Baptist Health’s app, which helps you easily manage your healthcare — including viewing MRI results — from any mobile device.

  • No, MRI does not use radiation. Instead, MRI scanners use magnetic fields and radio waves to create a detailed image. It does not expose you to any radiation.

  • Baptist Health Imaging uses 1.5T and 3T MRI scanners, which refers to the strength of their magnetic fields. The magnetic field strength determines the frequency of resonance. The most commonly used machines are 1.5T, which have a resonant frequency of 64MHz.

    The 1.5T machines are used for most imaging and preferred for patients with implants. For imaging that requires higher resolution of smaller structures (such as the prostate), the 3T machines can provide more detailed images.

  • No, the MRI scanner is painless and minimally invasive. Some patients who are uncomfortable lying down may experience the same discomfort during an MRI exam.

  • We recommend someone else drive you to and from your appointment if it makes you more comfortable or if you’re taking anxiety medicine. However, anyone with you will need to stay in the waiting room. Family, friends, children or service animals cannot go with you into the MRI room.

Proven Quality

Proven Quality

The MRI machines used at Baptist Health produces clear, high-quality images your provider can use to accurately diagnose and treat you. We are accredited by the American College of Radiology, so our medical imaging staff meet the needed experience and qualifications and complete continuing education regularly.

Schedule Your MRI Today.

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