If you are scheduled for a Breast MRI, after reading the
rest of the information on this page,
specific to that test. Otherwise, your physician will
give you specific instructions to prepare for your MRI. If
you are unsure about what you need to do, please call SIRA
with your questions at 812-333-7675.
In general, most MRI patients must not eat or drink anything
for two hours before your appointment time. However, if you
will have an MRCP (MRI of the pancreas and gall bladder),
you may not eat or drink anything after midnight the night
before your appointment.
If you are over the age of 65, diabetic, or with known renal
disease, you must have lab work including BUN and creatinine
exams done within 30 days prior to the contrast MRI.
We will review your medical history and ask you to read and
sign several forms related to your insurance, explanation
about the MRI itself, and an authorization for us to do the
You will be asked if you have any artificial joints or
plates or artificial valves, if you are pregnant, or if you
have had surgery. You will be asked if you have any metal on
your person. Expect to be asked to remove jewelry, including
hairpins or barrettes.
You may be given a gown or scrubs to wear during the exam
and your personal belongings will be kept in a locker during
Our technologists will position you carefully on the padded
MRI table, using special supports to make sure that you do
not move during the exam. Your technologist will place a
specialized device called a "coil" around the part of your
body being examined. You will be fitted with headphones and
you will be able to hear and speak to the MRI technologists
even after they have left the room.
If you are having a scan with contrast, you will be given an
injection of the contrasting agent, or you may have an IV
inserted so it can be given midway through your exam. If you
receive the contrast agent midway through, it is especially
important that you not move at all while you are being given
this injection through the IV. The contrasting agent does
not contain iodine and the only common side effect that you
may have is a brief feeling of warmth or a metallic taste in
your mouth. This is normal and will go away in a few
When you are undergoing the exam, you must lie quietly. The
brightness of our room will help you if you tend toward
claustrophobia. You will be encouraged not to talk during
your exam, because it is important that you lie perfectly
still. The exam usually lasts between 15 and 60 minutes.
You will not experience any pain due to the exam. You will
hear loud intermittent hammering noises, but this is normal.
Your technologist will step out of the room as your exam
begins, but will be in the next room monitoring your
progress on a computer screen and through a window. The
technologist will also be able to hear you and talk to you
through an intercom. During your exam, the technologist will
be watching you through a window while your scan is shown on
After your MRI, you can expect no effects as a result of the
exam. You can resume your normal activities. Any contrast
substance that you took for your MRI will pass naturally
within a day or so.