Medical technology is constantly improving and most of the medical community believe that recent open MRI machines are better in many circumstances than the more traditional casket like MRI machines. Here is a look at the two version of MRIs.

MRI or Magnetic resonance imaging machines were introduced to the medical field in the 1980s and help bring about an advance in medical professionals being able to check patients for tumors, brain and spinal cord injuries, heart defects, and checking for problems with other internal organs. However, these coffin like machines were not without their problems. The feeling of being enclosed inside of a such a confined place may cause patients to suffer from anxiety and anxiety attacks, become claustrophobic or who are children or the elderly or even obese.

For these people having an MRI was an ordeal and many would put off these tests, jeopardizing their health rather than finding themselves enclosed in this limited space capsule. In addition when a patient panicked during the test, the technician had to stop the test, calm the patient and then start the imaging all over again from the last series of passes.

Open MRIs are a newer addition to the medical community and are different from traditional MRI machines in a number of different ways. First and foremost open MRIs are more open gently cradling patients not enclosing them. Patients can stand, sit or lie down when an open MRI is used and are able to see their doctor, technician, nurses or even watch television while the test is being conducted.

Open MRI machines offer several benefits to both patients and medical personnel including:

  • More comfortable for more patients- Open MRIs are more comfortable for more patients. There tends to be no anxiety, or panic when these machines are used. In addition, doing imagining of small children is easier since children can see and be verbally comforted by having their parents and even hold their hand making the entire scan less frightening for younger children. They are also more comfortable for patients who find it painful to lay for long periods of time.
  • Fewer side effects for patients- Due to some patients suffering extreme anxiety and fear when inside a closed MRI they often need to be medicated in order for a scan to be done. Patients who have open MRIs normally don’t need to medicated so are likely to experience fewer side effects and need little recovery time after the scan.
  • Better Imaging for Technicians- Since technicians can easily reposition patients to get clearer images of certain areas, Open MRI imaging may actually take less time because technicians don’t need to stop the scan to calm patients, or to have to restart a scan because a patient moves during the test. This results in more cost effective and faster results.

With open MRI scanning machines becoming more popular having an MRI may soon be just another test for many patients, encouraging them to get their scans faster while feeling less anxiety.