Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a medical imaging procedure that uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to produce cross-sectional images of organs and structures within the human body.

In most MRI machines, an electric current is passed through coiled wires to create a temporary magnetic field around a patient’s body. Radio waves are then sent from and received by a transmitter/receiver in the machine, and these signals are used to produce digital images of the area of interest.

MRI can give different information about structures in the body than can be obtained by using a standard x-ray, ultrasound, or computed tomography (CT). For example, an MRI exam of a joint can provide detailed images of ligaments and cartilage, which are not visible using other medical imaging technologies.

Last Modified: February 24, 2015