Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

MRI Exam Options at Radiology Imaging Associates

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What is an MRI?

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), is a noninvasive way for physicians to examine internal organs, tissues, and skeletal system. It produces high-resolution images that helps obtain diagnostic information. Unlike X-Rays and computed tomographic (CT) scans, which use radiation, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses powerful magnets and radio waves.

An MRI procedure can quickly provide accurate diagnostic information which may reduce the need for exploratory surgery or other procedures that may have greater risk.

It was a truly wonderful experience, all the nervousness I had prior to having my MRI were removed by the wonderful treatment from the wonderful staff. Thank you so much!

- RIA at Lansdowne, Leesburg, VA

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What are some common uses of MRI?

Brain and Spinal Cord: MRI is the most sensitive imaging test of the brain and spinal cord. It's often performed to help diagnose tumors, spinal cord injuries, strokes, developmental abnormalities, aneurysms, pituitary gland diseases, multiple sclerosis, and dementia progression.

Functional MRI of the brain can be used to identify important language and movement control areas in the brain in people who are being considered for brain surgery.

Musculoskeletal System: MRI is often used to study the knee, ankle, foot, shoulder, elbow, wrist, and hand. MRI is also a highly accurate method for evaluation of soft tissue structures such as tendons and ligaments from the result of joint disorders (i.e. arthritis) or joint abnormalities caused by traumatic or repetitive injuries.

Imaging of the Heart: MRI of the heart, aorta, coronary arteries, and blood vessels is a tool for diagnosing coronary artery disease and other heart problems. Physicians can examine the size and thickness of the chambers of the heart and determine the extent of damage caused by a heart attack or heart disease; and the buildup of plaques and blockages in the blood vessels.

Breast Imaging: MRI may be used in addition to mammography to detect breast cancer, particularly in women who have dense breast tissue or who may be at high risk of the disease.

Furthermore because there is no radiation exposure is involved, MRI is often used for examination of the male and female reproductive systems.

Imaging for Cancer & Functional Disorders: Organs of the chest, abdomen and pelvis including the liver, lungs, kidneys, pancreas, spleen, ovaries, uterus, prostate, and testicles can be examined in great detail with MRI. This aids in the diagnosis and evaluation of tumors and functional disorders.

MRI at Radiology Imaging Associates

High Field Open MRI - RIA at Lansdowne All RIA locations offer a full range of MRI services. Every MRI is high-field strength (measured in units of tesla) which provides faster scan time, and the highest resolution and imaging quality to accurately diagnose your condition.

Our MRI systems have the latest technology and are equipped with specialized coils (breast, foot & ankle, shoulder, brain, spine, upper/lower extremity, and neurovascular) which act as antennas and pick up additional signals, providing greater detail to specific areas of the body. Our MRI technologists are highly trained and experienced which will allow you to be at ease during the exam. Our team of radiologists are board certified, and have sub-specialty training and years of experience in sports, neurological, breast and whole body imaging to accurately diagnose your condition.

How Does an MRI Work?

Images from MRI are similar in many ways to those produced by CT scans, but MRI generally gives much greater contrast between normal and abnormal tissues. MRI is a valuable tool for the diagnosis of a broad range of conditions, including:

  • brain and spinal cord (neurological)
  • joint and musculoskeletal disorders (musculoskeletal)
  • cancer (oncological)
  • heart and vascular disease (cardiovascular)
  • breast

MRI allows evaluation of some body structures that may not be as visible with other diagnostic imaging methods.

3.0T MRI - RIA at Lansdowne Tesla (T) is the unit of measurement quantifying the strength of the magnet field. The greater the strength of the magnet, the greater the clarity, higher resolution, imaging quality, and faster scan time. Having an exam performed on a low or medium strength MRI may or may not identify the underlying condition. Additional tests would be performed if the condition is not accurately diagnosed.

  • Low-Field MRI = Under 0.3 Tesla
  • Mid-Field MRI = 0.3 to 0.7 Tesla
  • High-Field MRI = 1.0 Tesla and above

Radiology Imaging Associates magnets are all high field strength ranging from 1.0T to 3.0T.

Virginia

  • 3.0 Tesla MRI: highest resolution images and advanced capabilities; shorter scan times; especially beneficial for conditions involving the brain, spine, and musculoskeletal system (first and only 3.0T in Loudoun County)
  • 1.5 Tesla MRI: shortest-bore, high speed, high quality images; dedicated breast imaging and biopsy, vascular and full body imaging
  • 1.0 Tesla High-Field Open MRI: anti claustrophobic, spacious, comfortable, high quality images; patient friendly and beneficial to children and larger patients (first and only high-field Open MRI in Loudoun County)

Maryland

  • 1.5 Tesla MRI: shortest-bore, high speed, high quality images; dedicated breast imaging and biopsy, vascular and full body imaging
  • 1.2 Tesla High-Field Open MRI: anti claustrophobic, spacious, comfortable, high quality images; patient friendly and beneficial to children and larger patients (only high-field Open MRIs in southern Maryland, at RIA at Patuxent and RIA at Heritage)

Oasis 1.2 Tesla Open MRI - RIA at Patuxent

Oasis 1.2 Tesla Open MRI - RIA - Patuxent

Locations that provide MRI exams

Pembrooke - Waldorf, MD
Heritage - Clinton, MD
The Breast Center - Clinton, MD
Patuxent - Prince Frederick, MD
Sterling, VA
Lansdowne, VA