Diagnostic Imaging

Diagnostic Imaging > Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

MRI uses waves and a strong magnetic field to produce clear and detailed pictures of the body, without the use of x-rays. It is a non-invasive way of viewing organs, soft tissues, bone and other internal body structures.

Common Uses of MRI:

  • Analysis of any part of the body including the brain, spine, joints, bones and soft tissues.
  • Diagnosis of small tears, injuries to tendons, ligaments, muscles and small fractures which cannot be seen on X-rays.
  • Diagnosis of degenerative disorders such as arthritis.
  • Analysis of damage to the spinal cord after trauma.
  • Diagnosis and analysis of infections and tumours of the nervous system, bones and joints.

Preparations for MRI:

  • No special preparation of food restriction is required except for MRI Abdomen, MRI Liver and MRCP, 4-6 hrs fasting is required before the examination.
  • Inform the staff if you have any existing medical conditions or electronic devices in your body.
  • Jewellery or any metal objects have to be removed prior to the MRI scan.
  • If you are claustrophobic, sedation may be required. Please highlight this when making an appointment.
  • A contrast medium may be administered to enhance the visibility of certain tissues or blood vessels. This is usually injected in the vein of your hand or arm.

MRI Stroke Screen

WHAT? Used to rule out a stroke, the MRI Stroke Screen can also detect other medical conditions which may cause similar symptoms to stroke, such as hemorrhage or bleeding within the brain. MRI uses magnetic fields to detect subtle changes in the brain tissue. One effect of stroke is the slowing of water movement, called diffusion, through the damaged brain tissue. An MRI can show this type of damage within the first hour after stroke symptoms start.

WHO? Stroke screening is recommended for anyone with a higher risk of stroke including hypertension, diet high in cholesterol, tobacco smoking and family history of stroke.

WHY? There have been cases where patients had a stroke and not realised it. Ted Lowenkopf, M.D., medical director of Providence Stroke Center states, “A stroke’s effects can be undetectable if the stroke is small or if the tissue damaged does not serve a critical function. Evidence of the stroke would show on a CT scan or an MRI of the brain, but it might not produce symptoms.” Thus, MRI Stroke Screening is important as patients may not realize that they had suffered a stroke if symptoms have been minor. The MRI provides significantly more detailed images of the patient as compared to a typical CT scan. This will allow the cause of the issue to be identified speedily. A rapid response to stroke symptoms is critical.

MR Elastography with Fat Quantification

WHAT? MR Elastography, combined with fat quantification can detect hardening of the liver and fatty liver: 2 common signs which may lead to more serious liver problems such as fibrosis, cirrhosis or liver cancer. The magnetic waves of the MRI allow the stiffness of the soft tissue to be examined and checked in a very convenient and non-invasive way.

WHO? Fatty liver disease is not only caused by high consumptions of alcohol. It can also result from other health conditions such as obesity and high cholesterol. While we recommend heavy and frequent drinkers for this scan, people who are overweight with low physical activity should also consider doing the MR Elastography.

WHY? When detected early, the initial stages of liver issues can be reversible. Non-alcoholic fatty liver – the first stage of liver disease and liver fibrosis often goes undiagnosed as patients often do not experience any signs or symptoms. When treated early, these initial liver issues can be nipped in the bud.


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