Let’s face it, getting an MRI is no fun. I mean, who actually looks forward to lying in a noisy coffin for thirty minutes to an hour? My guess is: no one. Luckily, Fonar Corporation, one of the leading independent manufacturers of MRI scanners, has developed the Stand Up MRI where patients can sit or stand during their scans. This Open MRI mitigates the claustrophobic feeling often associated with a traditional MRI, and features a range of other benefits.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging, better known as MRI, has proven to be a major advancement in diagnostic imaging. However, it certainly has not proven to be the most comfortable experience for patients. With Fonar Corporation revolutionizing the Stand up MRI, patients can step away from the dark side and complete their scans without the fear of experiencing claustrophobia. The Upright®/Stand up MRI does not require patients to squeeze into a tight tube, and is much quieter than the conventional MRI.
What Makes the Upright MRI Unique?
Upright/Stand Up MRI: Although we do not live our lives lying down, a traditional MRI requires patients to lie down when getting tested. While it works in some cases, this limitation may not accurately display the stress and pressure that occurs when a person’s symptoms occur only in their upright position.
The Fonar Upright® MRI is designed to scan patients in weight bearing postures, which leads to a more accurate diagnosis. Whether it is sitting, standing, bending, leaning, or even lying down, it is certainly critical to pinpoint the problem based on the position that the patient experiences symptoms. “For MRI scans in particular, we at Clermont Radiology provide both the ultra short bore high field MRI where patients can go feet first with their head outside of the machine looking up at a skylight, or an Upright open MRI allowing patients to be scanned sitting upright, facing a large flat screen TV,” says Michael Schroer, an MRI technologist at Clermont Radiology Medical Imaging Center. “This position allows us to see the spine, spinal cord, and nerve roots in a naturally stressed position. We additionally have the ability to do flexion and extension views in an upright position to demonstrate the spinal cord under mobility stress.”
Regardless of age or weight, the Upright MRI allows all parts of the body to be imaged with its normal impact on the spine and joints including the hips, knees, and ankles. “The table can be tilted to any angle for proper positioning, stabilization, patient comfort, and better image quality,” adds Schroer. The Upright MRI, like all MRIs, has the ability to see soft tissues, but also provides a more comprehensive view of pathology and its impact on bodily function. As a result of its ability to quickly scan patients in weight-bearing positions, this MRI can identify problems that could go undetected on conventional scanners.
Furthermore, obtaining an upright MRI is covered through insurance and does not require any additional charges, which is great news for patients who prefer an open MRI.
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Is it Worth the Investment for Buyers?
As technology advances in the medical field, so do patients’ expectations. State of the art open MRIs and Upright MRIs are considered the next best alternative for patients who need to understand their symptoms without the added fear and anxiety of being squeezed into a small area for long periods of time.
“At our center, we see over 100 patients a day, and provide both the high field MRI and Upright MRI,” states Robert Serros, owner of Clermont Radiology. “We have patients who travel over 60 miles just to have an MRI performed using the Upright technology.”
Upright MRIIn addition to the patient friendly experience of the Upright MRI, the efficient use of Tesla power also provides the diagnostic precision physicians are looking for. The combination of the unique transaxial magnetic field and use of high-field spine coils is one of the prime reasons why the stand up open MRI displays phenomenal image quality. “We are very lucky to be able to offer some of the most patient friendly MRI machines,” says Schroer. “Our Fonar MRI is a 0.6 Tesla machine with a field strength approaching the strength of a high field machine, which is most commonly a 0.2 Tesla field strength for open MRIs.”
Several case studies have been conducted to ensure the accuracy and ease of an Upright® MRI. To learn more about Upright® MRI equipment and purchasing open MRIs, contact us today. We are here to answer all your questions.