- Body Composition Testing
- Open MRI
- Bone Health Clinic
- - Osteoporosis
- - Appointment Visits
- - Safety & Treatment
- Pediatric Orthopedics
- Spine & Pain Clinic
- Sports Medicine
- Injury Walk-In Clinic
- Kiva VCF Treatment System
- Total Ankle Replacement
- Total Hip Replacement
- Total Knee Replacement
- XP Preserving Knee
- Minimally Invasive Procedures
- - Direct Anterior Hip Replacement
- - Direct Superior Hip Replacement
- - Hip Arthroscopy
- - Meniscal Transplant
- - Mini-Posterior Hip Replacement
- - Regenerative Orthopedics
- - PRP Therapy
- - MACI
- - IRAP
- - FloGraft
The magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) services offered by Iowa Ortho generate high-quality, state-of-the-art images of the human anatomy. These MRI images display high tissue contrast and spatial resolution, and are optimized for orthopedic use by our skilled technicians. An open-air MRI is a non-invasive procedure that creates images of the inside of a patient’s body. Although the technology has continued to advance since the 1970’s, the basics of an MRI consist of using magnetic fields, radio waves and computer software without the use of radiation, which is typically found in x-ray and computerized tomography (CT) scanning.
Hours: 6AM - 7:30PM Monday-Friday
In order to provide you with a safe open-sided MRI procedure, and to expedite your results, please follow the steps below.
The MRI magnet is ALWAYS on, therefore it’s very important to follow the safety guidelines and make sure you remove all metal that may be on your body. Failure to follow these guidelines could potentially cause great harm to yourself and the technologists operating the mri machine.
- Fill out the Pre Screening form to make sure that it is safe for you to have an MRI. The screening form covers any contraindications that may prohibit you from having an MRI. Please let your doctor or technologist know if you have EVER had any metal chips or fragments in your eyes from welding, grinding, or any accident of any sort. If you have welded or grinded, you will need to have an x-ray to confirm that there are no metal fragments in your eye, which could cause harm.
- Provide any previous imaging such as x-ray, CT, and MRI exams that have been taken of the area that we will be imaging. If your images were taken at Iowa Ortho, the MRI department already has access to them.
- Provide any previous medical records for past treatment and or surgery, especially operative notes. If you have only been seen by Iowa Ortho physicians, the MRI department has access to all of your medical records.
- Please fill out a medical release so we may obtain any records that you do not have access to. Getting the results of your MRI may be delayed if we cannot obtain these records.
- Bring your insurance card and photo ID along with any copayments or account balances. We will collect monies due at this time.
- Leave all valuables at home. Remove all jewelry (e.g., necklaces, rings, pins), including all body piercing. Remove all hairpins, bobby pins, barrettes, clips, etc. Remove your watch, cell phone, pager, bank and credit cards, and any card with a magnetic strip.
- You will be asked to remove eyeglasses, hearing aids and the possibility of dentures just prior to the MRI.
- Wear clothing with no zippers, buttons, snaps or hooks (including bra for women). Gowns and shorts will be provided if needed. Shoes will be removed but socks can stay on. Personal lockers are provided to store belonging in.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- HOW DOES AN MRI WORK?
- MRI images are formed when signals emitted by body tissue are processed by software and turned into clinical images. These signals are generated using a safe magnetic field in combination with radio waves of a specific frequency. Different tissue characteristics are translated into different contrast levels (shades of gray) on the image.
- WHY SHOULD I GET AN MRI?
- The MRI we use gives doctors a detailed look at the soft tissue elements of the body, including cartilage, ligaments, tendons, and muscles and nerves that cannot be detected by normal x-rays. MRI is effective in the clinical evaluation of knee, hip, shoulder, hand, wrist, foot and ankle injuries or conditions, spine injuries and disease, musculoskeletal disorders, brain disorders, traumatic injuries, and tumor detection. MRI is also valuable in detecting eye/facial/neck abnormalities, liver and other abdominal diseases, infection, cardiac malformation and blood flow and vessel disorders.
An MRI offers the best of all imaging modalities for orthopedics because of its superior contrast differentiation between muscle, fat, vessels, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, cortical bone and marrow bone. Also, the images provided by an MRI are either two or three-dimensional, depending on the needs of the doctor. In comparison, x-rays can provide only one-dimensional images.
- WHAT DOES “OPEN MRI” MEAN?
- Most MRI machines are closed and require the patient to be inserted in a cylinder-like opening. These tight confines may cause patients to feel claustrophobic. The MRI at Iowa Ortho is considered to be an Open Unit which means it is open on the sides. This allows individuals to look to the side and see out, helping with the feeling of claustrophobia. Our Open Unit is able to scan patients weighing up to 500 pounds with a table width of 17.3 inches.
- IS MRI SAFE/WILL IT HURT?
- An MRI provides safe, pristine images that assist physicians greatly in diagnosing and treating orthopaedic injuries. A safety screening form is required for you to fill out before your exam to ensure that you have no contraindications for having an MRI.
There is no pain associated with MRI imaging, and there are no side effects or after effects. During an MRI procedure, you may hear a loud thumping noise during the scanning portion of the imaging. In order to make our patients feel completely comfortable, you will be given a headset and you can select what you want to listen to from news, radio talk shows, or your favorite music.
- HOW LONG WILL THE SCAN TAKE?
- The average time for an MRI procedure is 30-45 minutes depending on the type of information required by your physician, so please plan accordingly. There are some MRI studies that require more time, up to 90 minutes in some cases, so be sure to ask your technician how long they estimate the procedure will take. You can help to make your images as clean as possible by relaxing and remaining still during the exam. Some patients even fall asleep during their MRI.
- WHAT DOES IT MEAN WHEN YOU HAVE TO GIVE CONTRAST?
- A contrast agent may be administered to enhance the study. If you are receiving contrast, you may need to have blood work drawn. An IV will be used to administer the contrast agent. Most studies that are done at Iowa Ortho do not require contrast. Consult the physician or technologist if you have questions.
- WHAT IS AN ARTHROGRAM?
- An Arthrogram is an MRI scan after the doctor injects contrast into the joint being scanned. This is used to show any cartilage tears in the joint better than a plain MRI or other diagnostic test. You will be asked to have a driver with you as you will not be allowed to drive after the injection.
- HOW DO I MAKE SURE I AM SAFE FOR THE MRI SCAN?
- Please make sure you tell your MRI technician about any medical devices or implants you may have. Patients with pacemakers, ear implants, metal clips in the eyes, metal implants, aneurysm clips, surgical staples, implanted infusion devices, wires from cardiac bypass procedures, any implanted or embedded wires, certain types of medication patches (that may contain small metal wires), shrapnel or bullet wounds, permanent makeup, intrauterine devices (IUD), etc. or neurostimulators (TENS unit) may be at risk for complications because of the potential harmful effects of these objects entering the magnetic field. Pregnant women should be cautious about the MRI procedure, and only be scanned after they have been cleared by their family doctor and obstetrician.
In addition to the above items, patients who may have previous metal in the eyes should be extremely cautious. Please let your doctor and technician know if you have ever had any metal chips or fragments in your eyes from welding, grinding or any other type of accident. In these cases, an x-ray of the eye, called an orbital x-ray, must be taken prior to the MRI procedure. Even if the metal. fragment was taken out, or came out on its own, or if the eye issue occurred a long time ago, an x-ray is the only safe way to confirm that there are no remaining fragments that might impact the procedure. This is particularly important, because small fragments in the eye could potentially damage the eyes if brought into the magnetic field. If an orbital x-ray is required prior to your MRI, the IOC Outpatient Scheduling Department will arrange for this prior to your MRI. If you have done welding or grinding but never got metal in your eyes, you do not need the eye x-ray. If there is ever any question about this, the x-rays should be obtained.
Other types of metallic objects, like fillings in your teeth, dental braces and permanent bridges, etc. may be present during an MRI procedure. They may cause some distortion of the magnetic resonance image around the mouth area, but they will not cause harm to the patient or the MRI equipment. When necessary, you may be asked to remove make-up and dentures and to wear a hospital gown to avoid magnetic interference from belt buckles and zippers.