First Time User? Sign Up Now
First Time User? Enroll now.
Home > Health Library > Open Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Machine
Courtesy of Diane Newton, MD, and Drew Taylor, Director of Advanced Open Imaging, Meridian, Idaho.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a test that uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to make pictures of organs and structures that are inside the body. During the MRI test (also called an MRI scan), you usually lie on your back on a table that is part of the MRI scanner. Your head, chest, and arms may be held with straps to help you stay still. The table will then slide into the space that contains the magnet.
Inside the scanner you will hear a fan and feel air moving. You may also hear tapping or snapping noises as the MRI scans are done. It is very important to stay completely still while the scan is being done.
An open MRI machine has a larger opening compared to a standard MRI machine. Some have magnets that do not completely surround your body, as shown here. But this kind of open MRI cannot do some types of MRI scans.
People who get nervous in small places (are claustrophobic) may feel better using an open MRI machine. An open MRI machine also may be easier to use for people who are very overweight or obese. But not all medical centers have this kind of MRI machine.
Current as of: March 28, 2019
Author: Healthwise StaffWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency MedicineAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineMartin J. Gabica, MD - Family MedicineHoward B. Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology
Current as of:
March 28, 2019
Medical Review:William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Howard B. Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2019 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
2615 Lake Drive
Raleigh, NC 27607
901 Ridgefield Drive
Raleigh, NC 27609
4420 Lake Boone Trail
Raleigh, NC 27607
934 Vandora Springs Road
Garner, NC 27529
1505 SW Cary Parkway
Cary, NC 27511
UNC REX Healthcare4420 Lake Boone TrailRaleigh, NC 27607, USA919-784-3100
Chosen for Excellence
Co-Worker & Physician Login
UNC Health Talk
Copyright 2020 UNC Health Care. All rights reserved.