Undiagnosed injury or health condition? An affordable MRI will provide essential insight and help lead you to your correct treatment solution.
Avoid waiting lists and the need for a GP referral with a diagnostic MRI scan.
Before your MRI scan
Before you enter the scan room, the radiographer will go through your safety questionnaire with you.
During your MRI scan
Depending on what kind of MRI you need, you will need to lie still for 15 minutes to an hour during your scan.
Your images will be reported within 2-3 days or 7 days if a full-body scan. Your report is sent to your GP or our in-house GP if you prefer.
- Why do I need to wait for MRI on the NHS?
Most MRI scans are requested on a non-urgent, consultant-led basis. This means you’re subject to a maximum 18 weeks waiting time from your NHS e-Referral Service appointment booking day OR when the hospital gets your referral letter. Then there is a further wait for your results of around 24 hours.
- Why is the wait list so long on the NHS?
Well, it’s the National Health Service after all. It’s looking after the vast majority of patients in the UK. So, you are competing with everyone you live nearby who may have more critical healthcare concerns than you. You can skip this queue if you opt to get a private MRI scan and pay for it yourself.
- What is a self-pay MRI?
Also known as a private MRI scan, a self-pay MRI is where you seek treatment away from the NHS with a private GP, surgery or clinic. When looking for someone to ‘self-refer me for MRI’; many people don’t realise they can book in directly with a private clinic.
- Can I self-refer for an MRI?
Yes. If you’re willing to pay for the scan yourself, you simply need to answer a few questions and then you can book in an MRI scan, knee scan or nearly any other sort of scan.
- Can I book an MRI for myself?
Yes. It’s also possible to book for someone else if you’re their carer. Let’s say you need a knee pain MRI, simply answer a few questions about why you want the scan and some extra safety questions and you can get booked in.
- How does an MRI work?
In the simplest terms, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses magnets to take pictures of the body. It works by placing the body in a strong magnetic field which causes all your internal protons to line up and by pulsing them; you can take pictures of the body and of anything that doesn’t behave like it should (like a tumour).
- How long does an MRI take?
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) takes between 15 to 90 minutes depending what you’re trying to scan and how many pictures you need to take of the body.
- Why do people have a phobia of MRIs?
Well, no one likes confined spaces. And inside the MRI can feel a bit close-quarters. But if you do have claustrophobia, let the team know and there are some techniques they can use to help relieve your anxiety.
- Is an MRI harmful?
No. There have been a lot of studies on the impact of radio waves and magnets on the body and no risks have been identified. It’s very safe.
- Do I need an MRI or an X-ray? What is the difference?
First, an MRI is a bit safer. X-rays use radiation but an MRI uses magnets. Radiation in large doses is not good for you. Your GP may suggest an MRI for soft tissue injuries & concerns but an x-ray for bones.
- Why should I get an MRI?
An MRI lets your GP see all your bones, organs and soft tissue inside your body without needing to cut you open. If you’re concerned you have a disease or injury, an MRI might be used if a CT scan or x-ray showed no results. You may also want to get a self-pay MRI or private MRI scan done for a general check if you’ve never had one before.
- Why not ultrasound or x-ray?
X-rays are not that good at looking for problems in soft tissue or organs. And ultrasounds are reviewed in real time through a video feed which might not be suitable for you GP practice or health concern.
- When should I get a knee MRI?
If you’re experiencing knee pain, a knee MRI can look at the ligaments, muscles and tissues surround the knee to identify the cause of your knee pain within 15 to 45 minutes on average. This is because only your lower body needs to go into the MRI machine.
- When can I not get an MRI?
We can help you with detailed information about who should NOT get an MRI. But in general, you should avoid an MRI if you have kidney problems, have recently become pregnant or might be pregnant or are allergic to the dye used to contrast the scan. Also, you should not have an MRI if you have any metal in your body, are afraid of tight spaces to an extreme degree or you can’t lie still. Lastly, if your GP advises against an MRI; you probably shouldn’t have one.
- What is a full body MRI?
A full body MRI is a five-part scan that looks at the brain, neck arteries, chest, abdomen and pelvis. It takes around 1 hour where you’ll need to lay still in the MRI chamber. This is a very detailed study of the body and looks for incidental findings and such findings like an early tumour or any vascular abnormalities like an aneurysm. A whole body MRI is a good way to get a health check. There is an optional add on for laboratory blood testing which you could have drawn on the day.
- Why would I have a full body MRI?
Patients opt for a full body MRI if they’re suffering from any unexplained symptoms or looking for any warning signs of illness. Since some ailments effect different body parts, it’s advised to get a full body scan to check for any number of conditions like tumours, spinal cord injuries, aneurysms, blockages, pinched nerves, compressions or torn broken ligaments. A whole body MRI Scan can also be used for reassurance as a health check.