- Does the patient have to be prepared for the examination?
- How is the examination conducted?
- Is it necessary to use a contrast agent?
If you were referred for spinal MRI using a contrast agent, do not eat anything at least 6 hours before (for example, to identify tumours, for multiple sclerosis diagnostics, after previous surgery, etc.).
Otherwise, no special preparation is required and only general MRI instructions apply.
The radiology engineer will place you in the appropriate position on the examination table and install a coil suitable for the part of the spine to be examined. You will be provided with earphones for hearing protection as loud noises are generated during the investigation. You will be placed inside the MRI apparatus for the duration of the examination. You will hold a bell in your hand to use it if any problems occur during the procedure to alert the radiological engineer performing the procedure.
It is of particular importance that you remain completely still during the investigation as the movements impair the image quality!
The treatment takes about 15–30 minutes. The time is extended by an additional 15 minutes if a contrast agent has to be used.
The contrast agent is not routinely used in such examinations, except in special cases, such as to define known tumours, in multiple sclerosis or after previous surgery.