MR Spine

MRI Spine

MR Spine


MR imaging of the spine provides optimum imaging of the spine (cervical , thoracic or lumbar regions) discs and neural structures. Common indications include suspected disc herniation, nerve compression and unexplained backache.


No specific preparation is required. However as you are placed in a strong magnetic field, patients with pace makers, aneurysm clips or ferromagnetic metallic objects must advise the MRI staff when making your booking.   Stainless steel orthopaedic prostheses are, however, not a contra-indication. It is very important that you remain still and are comfortable in the scanner and therefore intravenous sedation is sometimes required.


You will be required to lie on a bed, which will be moved into a wide-bore tubular gantry. This is open at both ends. You will be in constant voice contact with the Radiographer.

In certain situations, especially the post-operative spine, a painless injection of intravenous contrast may be required.

During the examination a knocking noise will normally be heard.

If sedation is used your pulse and oxygen saturation levels will be monitored with a pulse oximeter. This is a small clip attached to your finger. The average examination lasts between 20 and 30 minutes.

You may experience vibrations during part of the studies. The examination is entirely painless and usually lasts between 20 and 30 minutes.

After Procedure

There will be no post-procedure side effects and you may continue normal activity. However, if sedation is used you will be instructed not to drive after the examination.

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