Resources

Q

What is an MRI of the chest, abdomen or pelvis?

A

Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, is a method of producing detailed pictures of organs and body tissues by exposing a patient to radio waves in a strong magnetic field. The field is measured and analyzed by a computer, which forms two- or three-dimensional images that may be viewed on a monitor. Because it uses radio waves and a magnetic field rather than x-rays, there is no exposure to radiation. An MRI of the chest, abdomen or pelvis provides information on the heart and lungs, abdomen and pelvis that may not be detected by an x-ray, ultrasound or computed tomography (CT scan).

Q

Why might my doctor recommend an MRI of the chest, abdomen or pelvis?

A

An MRI is often used to clarify previous x-rays or CT scans. Your doctor might recommend an MRI of the chest to detect abnormal growths including cancer and the stages of cancer growth. An MRI of the chest also can reveal diseased heart valves, disorders of the ribs and sternum and early breast cancer.