Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), offered at Morristown Medical Center and Overlook Medical Center, uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to produce photographs and films of organs and structures inside the body. In many cases, MRI provides information that cannot be obtained from an x-ray, ultrasound, or computed tomography (CT) scan.
During an MRI test, the area of the body being studied is positioned inside a strong magnetic field. The MRI can detect changes in the normal structure and characteristics of organs or other tissues caused by trauma, infection, inflammation, or tumors. Information from an MRI scan can be saved for further study. In some cases, a dye may be used during the MRI scan to enhance the pictures of certain structures. The contrast material may help evaluate blood flow, detect some types of tumors, and locate areas of inflammation.
MRI can diagnose a wide variety of conditions, including:
Head and neck abnormalities
- Brain tumors, aneurysms, bleeding into the brain, multiple sclerosis, stroke, or infectious processes
- Optic nerve (eye) and pituitary gland issues
- Disease in the parotid glands, larynx, parathyroid gland
- Vertigo and hearing loss, acoustic neuroma and benign tumors of the internal auditory canal
- Congenital abnormalities
- Spinal stenosis
- Disc bulges and herniations
- Spinal tumors and blood vessel abnormalities
Advanced MRI Techniques
- Functional MRI (FMRI) – enables neurosurgeons to plan surgical procedures that minimize the risk of damage to critical brain function by determining the normal functions controlled by the targeted brain area
- Spectroscopy – measures the level of certain metabolites (chemicals) in the brain to differentiate among a variety of brain conditions
- Perfusion imaging – measures brain blood flow and helps in the diagnosis of a variety of low-grade tumors that do not appear on conventional MRIs
- Diffusion imaging – diagnoses acute infarct (stroke) by measuring cell swelling, an early abnormality in stroke
- Tensor diffusion imaging – provides detailed images of areas of the brain that can be affected by tumors or related swelling or by diseases directly affecting areas of the brain
Magnetic Resonance Angiography (MRA)
Offered at Overlook Medical Center, MRA uses noninvasive MRI to detect problems of the arteries and veins, such as an aneurysm, blockage of a blood vessel (by fatty deposits or a blood clot), or a torn inner lining of a blood vessel (dissection). An MRA may be performed on the neck and brain to check for plaque buildup that could lead to stroke or aneurysms.
To schedule an MRI, please call 973-971-4163 for appointments at Morristown Medical Center or 908-5222-5220 for appointments at Overlook Medical Center.