If you’re scheduled to have an MRI performed, talk to your doctor about the possibility of an open design instead of a scan that is performed in a traditional machine. An open MRI imaging scan doesn’t involve the enclosed tube that can sometimes trigger anxiety and claustrophobia. During the scan, your doctor will be able to see the same results as with the enclosed design.
Sometimes, you might begin to feel as though the walls of a traditional MRI tube are closing in around you. Your blood pressure could begin to rise, and you might find that it’s difficult to breathe. An open MRI imaging scan can help with these feelings as you’re on a table with a machine that moves around you instead of being on a table that moves in and out of a machine.
A benefit of an open MRI design is that it can accommodate patients of all sizes and those who have all kinds of medical conditions. Obese patients don’t have to worry about whether they are too large to comfortably fit inside the machine. Elderly patients and others who have mobility issues will usually find that it’s easier to get onto the table and stay still instead of worrying about maneuvering around the enclosure of a traditional machine. Children can have a parent stay with them since there is more space on the table and since they won’t be in an enclosure.
Since open designs are somewhat newer than those that are enclosed, the machines are usually more advanced. This means that the images that your doctor sees are more detailed. There’s often more areas of the body that can be scanned with an open design since there are few distractions to get in the way of the machine circling around your body.
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