Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive imaging method which uses a very large magnetic field and radio-frequency waves to produce a range of images of the body. This can include soft tissue, ligament or bone structures, and is used by medical professionals to view areas such as the brain, spine, spinal cord and joints.


Yes. Most MRI scans will take about 20-30 minutes; however you may be required to attend for as long as 45-60 minutes depending on the complexity of the examination for which you have been referred. We ask if you could please call us to make an appointment or come in and arrange a suitable time.


In the majority of cases there is no special preparation, and you can eat, drink and take medications as you would normally. Some scans may require you to fast; you will be advised by the receptionist when you book your MRI if you do need to undertake any special form of preparation. You cannot bring any metallic objects into the MRI room, so it is best to leave any jewellery, watches, or any other metallic object you don’t need at home. Common restricted items include:

  • Purses, wallets, money clips, credit cards, coins
  • Jewellery and watches
  • Mobile phones
  • Hearing aids
  • Hair clips, pens, keys
  • Any article of clothing that has metal – zippers, buttons, belts, shoes

Before your examination you must tell us if you:

  • Are pregnant, or suspect you may be
  • Have a pacemaker, brain aneurysm clip, or any other metallic object in your body – you cannot enter the MRI room if you have any of these
  • Have had any surgery in the last 8 weeks
  • Have ever experienced a severe reaction to a previous injection of contrast media
  • Are allergic to any prescribed medication
  • Have kidney disease
  • Have any information you believe may be relevant to your examination
  • Referral from your doctor
  • Previous films and/or reports. If you have had a previous examination in any of our practices, these can be electronically retrieved and you do not need to bring them with you.
  • Method of payment including Medicare, Health or Pension Card (Please note that some MRI procedures are not covered by Medicare – please ask reception about payment options when making a booking)
  • For WorkCover claims, you will need the claim number, claim officer’s name and phone number, and any other relevant details.

A qualified and experienced MR radiographer will perform your MRI scan. The Radiologist onsite will closely consult with the radiographer during the examination, and prepare a comprehensive report for your referring doctor or specialist after a detailed review of your images.


Although the exact procedure may vary slightly depending on the areaof your body being scanned, you will always need to complete a safety questionnaire prior to the procedure. This to ensure that it is safe for you to enter the scanning room, as some metallic implants can be hazardous in the highly magnetic environment. You will need to remove any metallic objects before entering the MRI room. You may also be required to change into an examination gown.

You will be asked to lie down on the MRI table and the radiographer will position you. A specialised coil that assists in the production of the images is placed over the area of interest. The table will then be advanced inside the scanner for the duration of the procedure. You are always in full viewof our radiographer and, in order to communicate with them throughout the examination, there is an intercom system between the scanning room and the radiographer’s desk. You will also be given an emergency button so that you remain in complete control during the MRI.

Most MRI scans take about 20-30 minutes. During this time you will need to keep as still as possible. There are periods between imaging sequences where some minor movement may be allowed, which the radiographer will advise you accordingly. You may also be asked to hold your breath for a short period of time. Some good advice for when you’re having the scan is to close your eyes and focus on your breathing, and try to stay relaxed.

The MRI scanner can be quite noisy during the scan. For this reason hearing protection will always be provided. You will be given either ear plugs or headphones, depending on which will be most practical for the particular scan you are having. If you are given head phones you may be able to listen to music through them. A CD or I-Pod can be connected up from outside the scan room, or you can listen to the radio.An injection of contrast may also be required during the scan. Often this is decided during the examination if the radiographer and radiologist believe they cannot see things clearly enough. This injection of Gadolinium (an MRI specific contrast agent) is usually very well tolerated, although occasionally some people do experience minor side effects, nausea being the most common. This usually passes very quickly. You can resume normal activity straight after having an MRI scan



9716 3600


 8042 3000


9911 6800

Five Dock

8705 8300


9598 0100


8228 9000

North Strathfield

8282 8100

North Sydney (Mater Imaging)

9955 4466
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