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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

What is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive procedure that uses radio waves, a powerful magnet, and a computer to create a series of images detailing areas inside the body. 

For some MRIs, the doctor may also order the use of a contrast agent, such as gadolinium, which is injected into the body and improves the image quality by allowing the tissues and organs to show more clearly. 

Why are MRIs important in healthcare?

MRIs are powerful diagnostic tools that doctors may also use when planning treatment or gauging how effective treatment has been.

Some of the areas of the body in which MRIs are beneficial in medical imaging include:

  • the heart and blood vessels
  • the brain and spinal cord
  • joints
  • organs in the abdomen and pelvis
  • breasts