Knock! Knock! Is there anyone searching for all-about of an MRI scan for head and neck conditions before pursuing it? Here I am, with a detailed note on – What this scan is, when you need this scan, why doctors prescribe this scan and not so many other diagnostic modalities, and how this scan works!
So, stay tuned to this blog!
What is An MRI scan For Head And Neck Conditions?
An MRI or Magnetic Resonance Imaging scan for head and neck conditions is the imaging study of your internal head and neck anatomy via powerful magnetic fields and computer-generated radio waves. This scan can show the soft tissue accurately and, therefore, diagnose deeper and more complex diseases that other diagnostic modalities may not offer.
This MRI screens specifically – Your brain, blood vessels connecting your brain, facial bones, skull, inner ear structure, eye, supporting tissues, optic nerves, other cranial nerves, fats, bone, muscles, and the connective tissues; all of it!
Perhaps, in doing so, the scan can show disorders and abnormalities, such as –
- Traumatic Brain Injury,
- Tumors in the head or neck, be they benign or malignant,
- Infections and Inflammation,
- Multiple Sclerosis or a condition in which your immune system destroys the protective sheath of your nerves,
- Brain Hemorrhage and Bleeding,
- Blood Clots,
- Brain Aneurysms, i.e., bulging out blood vessels in your brain,
- White matter disease,
- Congenital (birth) defects in your brain,
- Fluid collection and leakages, and more!
Yes. These are all the probable conditions that you may have. But do not worry. An MRI scan has great proven efficacy in screening head and neck conditions. It can offer early diagnosis in many cases, thereby enabling your healthcare providers to initiate early treatment.
When Do You Need An MRI Scan For Head And Neck Conditions?
When you have conditions like –
- Persistent headache or a sudden bursting one,
- Nausea and repeated episodes of throwing up,
- Seizures or convulsions,
- Acute stiffness near your neck,
- Loss of consciousness, sometimes for minutes, and sometimes, even for hours,
- Inability to wake up from your sleep,
- Severe dizziness for some minutes all of a sudden at work,
- Extreme body weakness or fatigue,
- Hearing disabilities,
- Vision problems,
- Change in speech and behavior,
- Motion-related problems,
- Impaired mental or cognitive abilities, like memory loss, etc.,
You are likely to need a brain or head MRI scan, and your doctor, on consulting, would eventually prescribe it to determine the exact cause of these health symptoms; of yours!
Why Do Doctors Prefer An MRI Scan For Head And Neck Conditions?
Well, there are two primary reasons for doctors to prefer an MRI scan over other imaging tests in diagnosing and assessing head and neck conditions. The first one is, certainly, – The Safety Advantage, and the second, is The Diagnostic Accuracy.
Indeed, an MRI scan is the safest diagnostic modality in the field of medicine. It contains no ionizing radiation and, thus, is devoid of further health risks! On the contrary, a CT scan or an X-ray does bear the risks of harmful ionizing radiation.
You may opt for an ultrasound, but, there again, an MRI is much superior. That’s even to a CT, X-ray, or PET (Positron Emission Tomography) scan. An MRI holds about –
- 87.01% accuracy in diagnosing brain tumors,
- 96% to 97% accuracy in detecting brain aneurysms,
- 94% sensitivity and 83% specificity in identifying multiple sclerosis in its first attack,
- 89% accuracy in detecting acute stroke,
- 85% accuracy in diagnosing early-stage Parkinson’s,
- 98% accuracy in detecting initial-stage Alzheimer’s and 79% accuracy in detecting the later-phased one,
- 90% accuracy in locating cysts in your brain, and the list goes on!
How Does An MRI Scan For Head And Neck Conditions Work?
An MRI scan is simple in its procedure, preparation, and post-diagnosis care. Wondering; how it works? See below.
There is no special preparation for an MRI scan. You can eat your meal, drink water, exercise, bathe, and perform all your daily activities. However, make sure –
- You wear loose, comfortable clothes for the test, although the healthcare service providers typically provide you with a gown for the scanning session.
- Leave all metallic accessories at home or outside the test lab, as they may tamper with the scan results.
- Talk to your doctor about the daily medications you take and also; ask whether or not to have them before the test.
- Discuss the allergies you have with the healthcare providers, as the scan may involve contrast administration. And it may trigger your allergies as a post-diagnostic side effect.
- Get a recommendation for sedative use if you have acute claustrophobia, as the MRI machine has very little space inside, and the loud noise it causes adds to anxiety and anticipation.
During the MRI scan, a radiologist and a radiology technician shall conduct the procedure. When you enter the test lab, you can see the large MRI scanner, somewhat like a semi-circular tube, and a moveable table or bed attached to the machine. It is where the radiologist shall ask you to lie during the scan. You have to do so!
Then, the healthcare providers render ear cuffs, eye masks, and blankets to keep you comfortable and stress-free when inside the scanner. Once you move inside, the scanner machine starts its action.
The magnets attached to the walls trigger your body protons and make them dismantle their position. The radio waves, in the meantime, get ready to track their movement and send signals to the computer screen.
That’s how the image pops up on the computer screen, and the radiologist starts determining it. If the images are unclear or lack enough clarity, the radiologist may decide to use contrast material to enhance the image clarity and highlight the soft tissues with greater dexterity.
Hereafter, the healthcare providers shall bring you out of the machine, administer the contrast dye intravenously, and then moves you in again! The scan shall go on for forty-five to ninety minutes until precise images lay achieved.
There’s no such post-diagnostic care that you shall require after an MRI scan. You can return to your daily schedule right after the scan. You can follow your regular dietary and lifestyle habits.
However, since the contrast dye may lead to temporary side effects, like skin rashes, redness, infections, swelling, nausea, fatigue, and fever, you shall require enough rest to heal! Make sure to drink a lot of water. It can help flush out the dye from your body and, henceforth, eliminate the side effects too!
And, above all, wait for your report to come! That may take around one or two weeks.
So, do you now know all about an MRI scan for head and neck conditions that your doctor recommended shortly? I hope the blog served its purpose.
If you need an MRI scan booking in Chandigarh for your head and neck diagnosis, visit www.mrichandigarh.com. Here, you can get a flexible appointment booking from the top NABL-accredited diagnostic labs in the city, and also discounted quotation to go with it! What are you waiting for? Book your scan now!