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Old 09-09-2020, 08:47 PM   #1
Motts
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Default MRI anxiety

I have to get an MRI every 6 months of my abdomen. I stopped following up 2 years ago and my doctor is upset. She told me that I have to get an MRI done asap.

So, I googled MRI machines online and found "open MRIs." My healthcare plan allows me to get an open MRI (thank god) but my clinic and hospital don't have those, so I have to go out of network but I have a referral so I'm covered thankfully.

I'm relieved there are "open" MRI machines. The MRI isn't a tube but a donut with open sides. You're still smushed up against the MRI scanner but at least you aren't encapsulated like a life savers in a closed MRI tube.

I know I will be anxious b/c my scans will be anywhere from 10 seconds to 5 minutes for a 90 minute period with no stopping. And, I can't eat 4 hours before my open MRI so I'm getting mine done in the evening.

Does anyone have any suggestions for dealing with MRI anxiety? It has to do with feeling claustrophobic. I can't be sedated b/c I have no one to drive me or pick me up. So, I'm doing mine non-sedated and non-contrast.
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Old 09-10-2020, 09:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

Have you ever asked your doctor for a valium pill? It's the only way I stay still for MRI"s.
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Old 09-10-2020, 12:23 PM   #3
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

I canít take any kind of sedation because no one is available to drop me off or pick me up. Also I have asthma so I canít take any sedation.
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Old 09-10-2020, 12:29 PM   #4
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

I always need a valium to do an MRI -- sorry that's not an option for you. I'd suggest asking the facility or your doctor for a referral to a clinical hypnotherapist. Hypnosis can be very effective for anxiety and fear related to procedures.
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Old 09-10-2020, 05:51 PM   #5
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

You guys!!! I'm sooo relieved! I found a healthcare clinic/hospital in another suburb that has UPRIGHT STANDING OPEN MRI MACHINES.

YIPEEEEEEE!

You can WATCH TV during this standing/sitting MRI! Woo hoooo!

I emailed my dr. and asked her to write yet another referral to this clinic so that I can schedule a standing open MRI there. You basically stand or sit between the MRI magnets (???) and its much less claustrophobic than the MRI tube or the open MRI where you have to lie down.

Cross your fingers that my dr. will write the referral. Why didn't she tell me about this type of MRI 2 years ago? I'm kind of angry at her now. She's a dr. She should know these things.
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Old 09-11-2020, 06:53 PM   #6
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

FUDGE!!

While it's great that my dr. wrote a referral for the upright MRI -- the clinic that offers these types of MRIS will not perform an upright MRI on the abdomen. So...I had to message my dr. yet again, to share this info with her and then ask her to consider writing me a referral for a CT scan, and as a last resort...an ultrasound w/contrast. I hate contrast. It gives me hives every time I get it so I have to take Benedryl before I go in. I'm so upset that these upright MRI's supposedly can't scan your stomach area. I mean, you're standing between 2 giant magnets. One would think its possible. How can they scan your shoulder and your legs, but not your torso if you're standing up or lying on your side inside this machine.

I'm hoping my dr. considers the CT scan. I never get claustrophobic inside that donut shaped machine, It's so much easier to cope with than an MRI machine which is just the stuff of nightmares.
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Old 09-16-2020, 06:12 AM   #7
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

Is there any service in your area that would provide transportation to and from the clinic/procedures?
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Old 09-17-2020, 01:53 AM   #8
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Default Re: MRI anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by divine1966 View Post
Is there any service in your area that would provide transportation to and from the clinic/procedures?
There are mobility services like that, but I don't qualify for those (as far as I know) since I'm not disabled or elderly.

Now I'm waiting on my dr. to write a referral for a CT abdomen scan. Hopefully she will follow through on that.

I'm just too claustrophobic in an MRI machine laying down. Too bad I couldn't sit or stand inside an MRI upright for an abdomen scan. But I guess they don't scan the abdomen that way with upright MRI machines.
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