What to expect at a breast MRI

welcome to the MRI department of

diagnostic imaging this is where you'll

receive your breast MRI scan the

information in this video will help you

prepare for your scan before the test

for safety reasons please tell the

technologist if you have any of the

following metal devices pacemaker or

defibrillator piercings rods screws

plates or artificial joints the

technologist will need to verify the

type of metal used metal dental work

like a permanent retainer IUD or

intrauterine device tissue expanders

cerebral aneurysm clips spinal

stimulators or cochlear ear implants

inferior vena cava or IVC filter or

stents continuous and fusion pump or


in preparation for the MRI a nurse or

technologist will insert an IV into your

arm this will be for the contrast dye

given during your exam the dye will

enhance the images tell your doctor if

you are allergic to any type of contrast

also let your doctor know if you are

pregnant or nursing before the test the

nurse or tech will explain the procedure

to you there is no special preparation

for the exam you can eat and drink as

usual the scanning portion of the exam

will take 30 to 60 minutes during the

test you will lie in a prone position on

a padded table this means you will be

facedown and on your stomach the table

has a hole cut out for your face with a

padded rest for your forehead this

allows you to breathe comfortably while

in this position your breast will fall

freely during the scan contrast is

injected into the IV while images are

being acquired the contrast will

highlight abnormal areas on the image it

is noisy during the exam earplugs are

provided to reduce some noise but you

can still hear and talk to the tech

through the intercom system you also can

squeeze a special ball to alert the tech

if needed

the key to getting good images is to

relax and breathe normally try to lay

still during the exam do not lift your

head because this will cause your chest

to move the technologist will work with

you to find a comfortable position so

you can relax this will allow for the

best images when you focus on remaining

still you may tense up tensing up will

cause your muscles to twitch and this

will cause your breast tissue to move

this causes images to be blurry it is

important to get a good image because it

will help your doctor make a proper

diagnosis breathing normally is


getting a useable scan the first time

means additional scans will not be

needed some patients need help to relax

during an MRI try these helpful tips or

whatever helps you relax picture a calm

place count to distract yourself listen

to music if you took medicine to relax

for the MRI you must follow these

precautions afterwards

do not drive for 24 hours and have an

adult drive you home you may eat and

drink as normal

once the MRI is complete your IV will be

removed drink plenty of water after your

exam for 8 ounce glasses help flush the

contrast out of your system you can ask

about your results at your next doctor's

visit thank you for letting us show you

how the procedure works for a breast MRI

now that you know what to expect

you can make your MRI test successful if

you have any questions about MRI please

ask your nurse or other health care