Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between MRI and CT?
MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) uses strong magnetic fields with radio waves to capture images of the body, while CT (Computerized Tomography) uses high-energy radiation.
Are MRI and CT scans safe?
MRI scans are considered very safe, and no radiation is used. The magnets in the MRI will attract metallic objects, so all metal must be removed before entrance into the MRI scanning room.
CT scans have been directly linked to increased life expectancy and declining cancer death rates. A CT scan will expose you to low doses of radiation, which amounts are so small that the increased risks of cancer cannot be reliably measured. Since a CT uses high energy radiation, a doctor’s order is always required.
What is contrast?
Contrast media, or contrast dye, is sometimes used to improve the image quality for CT and MRI scans. Contrast helps radiologists distinguish or contrast a specific area of the body from other areas. It also helps to enhance the picture of blood vessels, organs, and different types of tissues. Contrast is usually administered intravenously and sometimes orally.
How long does the scan take?
Scans will usually take around 30 minutes to complete. However, they may take longer depending on the scan.
What if I am pregnant?
If you are pregnant, you must notify our radiology technologist.
Generally, CT scans are not recommended during pregnancy unless your physician or a radiologist determines the benefits outweigh the potential risk
What if I become claustrophobic?
Unlike most MRIs, where you are placed in a narrow tube, Desert Peak offers an open MRI. This means that both sides are completely open, providing you with plenty of space and comfort during your scan.