Upright MRI vs. Traditional MRI

  • July 26, 2018
  • Blog
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MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. MRI uses radio waves and magnetic fields to make image of the desired organ or any part of the body. Different types of MRI machines are available in the market for the better visualization of desired area of the body. Each type of MRI has its unique function. Two most commonly used MRI machines are upright MRI machine and traditional MRI machine.

Open Upright MRI:

It is an open air MRI unit. A patient don’t need to lie down as in traditional MRI unit. Scan can be performed when patient is standing or sitting. This MRI unit is able to scan the body in the position when symptoms are prominent. Disadvantage of using upright MRI is that the strength of the MRI is not as strong as that of traditional MRI unit. Many disabilities of the spine are not detected in the traditional MRI unit because the spine is not in the position of the weight bearing state. In upright MRI, the spine is fully loaded with the body weight which is critical for the accurate diagnosis of the spine disorders. The patient can even watch TV during scan in case of open upright MRI. So this unit is a good choice for those who are claustrophobic. It can also be used to scan obese patients.

Traditional Tunnel Type MRI:

Most of the MRI machines are tunnel type. It is better than open upright MRI unit because it is capable of producing high quality images, but according to the research published in the Journal of American Medical Association, 30% of the patients experience anxiety related reactions because of its enclosed tunnel like shape. Many of the patients are hesitant to perform MRI in closed chamber.

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