When is MRI Used For Evaluation of Auto Accident Victims?

Since a significant percentage of auto accident victims sustain injuries to the spine, muscles, joints, and tendons without sustaining fractures or internal bleeding, MRI is now often the first requested imaging evaluation for auto accident victims. MRI uses magnets and radio waves to produce detailed images of the inside of the human body without using x-ray radiation. MRI is superior to CT and X-ray for evaluation of the spine and for evaluation of muscles, tendons, and joints so MRI is ideal for evaluation of auto accident victims.

X-rays are still the first consideration for evaluation of auto accident victims if there is severe localized pain or deformity that is suspicious for a bone fracture. X-rays are easy and inexpensive to obtain even on an emergency basis.

CT scans are also frequently performed on an emergency basis. CT scans are state of the art x-rays that use computers to produce pictures of the insides of the human body and the insides of bones to more fully evaluate fractures and to detect serious internal bleeding that can occur in an auto accident.

Medical emergencies are so frequent that CT scans are now the most common cause of radiation exposure to the American population. X-rays also contribute to radiation exposure to the American population. MRI examinations are used more and more frequently whenever possible because MRI does not cause any radiation exposure while providing valuable information about muscles, joints, tendons, and the spine.