MRI Technician

MRI Technician


MRI technologist MRI Technician
The MRI technician (also known as MRI technologist or MRI tech) is the most specialized among all health care techs and one that is quintessential to any medical imaging department. MRI technicians enjoy a great career with generous compensation, job security, and great hours. MRI technologists also differ from other medical imaging techs in that they need to be adamant about safety issues related to their operating a powerful magnet that can cause serious injury in careless hands.

How to become an MRI technologist? Well, one needs to first have a high school diploma and then become a radiology technician (x-ray tech), a process that takes 1,2, or 4 years depending on whether one wants to end up with a diploma, associate degree (most popular) or Bachelor of science. The technician will then have to undergo more specialized training geared towards performing MRI exams and understanding the related physics and physiology. It is crucial that one chooses an accredited program for their education. The Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology is the organization charged with accrediting radiologic educational institutions and there are hundreds of these programs currently accredited throughout the US.

Many hospitals will provide training to the x-ray techs that desire MRI subspecialization. One should expect to spend 2 years to become certified as an MRI technician.

MRI technicians perform the MRI scans following imaging protocols that are geared towards the particular exam being performed. An MRI of the liver requires a different protocol than than that of the head or elbow. These protocols are formulated by the radiology department and intimate knowledge of the related physics, anatomy, and physiology will help the MRI technician shine and race through career advancement.

Safety is a crucial matter. The MRI technician must be adamant about all issues related to magnets. In particular, the MRI tech will make sure that anyone taking an MRI exam does not have any metal in their body, including that used in an earlier operation, shrapnel, ...etc as these will tear through the skin and cause serious injury.

The MRI technician explains the exams to the patients, have them sign an informed consent, positions them for optimal imaging, and makes sure they are comfortable throughout their scan. They make sure that the patient is comfortable and does not move while the images are acquired. Some studies require the administration of contrast (x-ray dye) and the MRI tech makes sure that this is done before the exam is started. When the contrast is administered, the MRI technologist must make sure that no the patient is not having any allergic reaction such as hives or shortness of breath and be ready to act promptly if needed.








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