Open v/s Closed MRI

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Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 9/17/2007 7:35 AM (GMT -6)   
Question...I have had 4 MRI's of the brain in the past.  All of them being in a closed MRI.  I switched to a new doctor.  He is sending me in two weeks for a MRI with and without contrast of the brain and spine in an open MRI.  Is an open MRI as informative as a closed MRI?  I had one area show up on the brain in the closed MRI.  I have never had one of the spine. The nurse said he uses this facility because he is very picky about the MRI machines and getting the best. I did not care for the close quarters of the closed MRI but I did not share this with the doctor.  Thanks for any help you can provide...

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2135
   Posted 9/17/2007 8:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Some of the new "open MRI" machines are every bit as accurate as the older "closed" machines are. I think the issue of an MRI "with contrast" is more important, as the "contrast" medium will show up active lesions, if there are any. If the radiologist who "reads" the MRI is well-trained, there should be no problem. I think you'll be OK.

Did you share your older MRI's with your new doctor? It would be important for him to have them as a comparison.
...I am not a doctor, nor health professional, and don't pretend to be one, here.....

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 9/19/2007 11:20 AM (GMT -6)   
Doodle- I have had both open and closed MRI's. I am also a Certified Medical Assistant. Doctors (at least up here in the Pacific Northwest) say the open MRI's are every bit as good as the closed, plus for those of us that can't stand closed in spaces (like me), the open ones are really nice. No need for valium or anything. I do agree that it is the contrast that will give your doc the best results.

Hope this helps you. Good luck!


Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 9/19/2007 11:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for the responses, Uppity and Kimmerz.  It is very much appreciated!!!  I think I will like the open one much better!!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2146
   Posted 9/19/2007 5:51 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Doodle

I was told differently about the closed vs open mri's. My first set of mri's were in a closed machine, but the second set was in a closed. The techs there told me the diff was that the magnet was much stronger than with a closed. I'm not sure that is true everywhere, but what they told me here.
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