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How Can Patients Prepare for Various Medical Imaging Procedures?

Published July 3rd, 2024 by Great Lakes Medical Imaging

Medical imaging procedures are essential tools for diagnosing and treating a variety of health conditions. At Great Lakes Medical Imaging (GLMI) in Buffalo, NY, we are dedicated to providing high-quality imaging services to patients across Western NY. Preparing for your medical imaging procedure can help ensure accurate results and a smoother experience. In this article, we’ll guide you through the preparation steps for various imaging procedures and highlight how you can benefit from our services.

Preparing for Your Medical Imaging Procedure

Different imaging procedures require different preparation steps. Knowing what to expect can help alleviate anxiety and ensure that the procedure goes as smoothly as possible.


What to Expect

X-rays are quick, non-invasive procedures used to capture images of the inside of your body, particularly bones.

Preparation Tips

  • Wear Comfortable Clothing: Wear loose, comfortable clothing that is easy to remove if necessary. You may be asked to change into a gown.
  • Remove Metal Objects: Metal objects, such as jewelry, eyeglasses, and belts, can interfere with the X-ray images. Remove these items before the procedure.
  • Inform the Technologist: Let the technologist know if you are pregnant or suspect you might be, as special precautions may be needed.

MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

What to Expect

MRIs use magnetic fields and radio waves to produce detailed images of the body's internal structures.

Preparation Tips

  • Clothing and Accessories: Wear comfortable clothing free of metal. You will need to remove all metal objects, including jewelry, watches, and hairpins.
  • Medical History: Inform the technologist about any implants, pacemakers, or other metal devices in your body. These can interfere with the magnetic field.
  • Claustrophobia: If you have a fear of enclosed spaces, let the technologist know. They can provide options to help you feel more comfortable, such as an open MRI or sedation.
  • Diet and Medication: Follow any specific instructions regarding eating and drinking before the procedure. In some cases, you may need to fast.

CT Scan (Computed Tomography)

What to Expect

CT scans use X-rays to create detailed cross-sectional images of the body.

Preparation Tips

  • Fasting: Depending on the type of CT scan, you may need to fast for a few hours beforehand. Follow your doctor's instructions regarding eating and drinking.
  • Clothing: Wear loose-fitting clothing and remove any metal objects.
  • Contrast Material: You may be given a contrast material to help highlight certain areas of your body. This can be ingested or injected. Inform the technologist if you have any allergies, especially to iodine or shellfish, as these can indicate a potential reaction to the contrast material.
  • Medical History: Provide a complete medical history, including any recent illnesses or conditions.


What to Expect

Ultrasounds use sound waves to produce images of the inside of the body. They are commonly used for examining the abdomen, pelvis, and during pregnancy.

Preparation Tips

  • Hydration: For certain types of ultrasounds, such as pelvic ultrasounds, you may need to drink several glasses of water before the procedure to ensure a full bladder.
  • Fasting: For abdominal ultrasounds, you may need to fast for 8-12 hours beforehand to reduce the presence of gas and ensure clearer images.
  • Clothing: Wear loose, comfortable clothing. You may be asked to change into a gown.


What to Expect

Mammograms are X-ray images of the breast used to detect early signs of breast cancer.

Preparation Tips

  • Schedule Wisely: Try to schedule your mammogram for a time when your breasts are least likely to be tender, such as a week after your menstrual period.
  • Avoid Deodorants and Lotions: Do not use deodorants, antiperspirants, powders, or lotions on the day of the exam, as these can appear on the X-ray and interfere with the results.
  • Clothing: Wear a two-piece outfit so you only need to remove your top. This makes the process more convenient and comfortable.
  • Medical History: Inform the technologist about any breast symptoms or problems, and provide a list of past mammograms, biopsies, surgeries, or hormone use.

Why Choose Great Lakes Medical Imaging?

At Great Lakes Medical Imaging, we are committed to providing exceptional care and the highest quality imaging services to our patients in Buffalo, NY, and Western NY. Our team of experienced radiologists and technologists use state-of-the-art technology to ensure accurate and timely diagnoses.

Our Services

  • Comprehensive Imaging: We offer a wide range of imaging services, including X-rays, MRIs, CT scans, ultrasounds, and mammograms.
  • Patient Comfort: Our facilities are designed with patient comfort in mind, providing a welcoming and supportive environment.
  • Expert Staff: Our highly trained staff is dedicated to ensuring that your imaging experience is as smooth and stress-free as possible.

Contact Us Today

If you need medical imaging services, don’t hesitate to contact us at Great Lakes Medical Imaging. Our team is here to support you every step of the way, from preparation to follow-up care. Schedule your appointment today and experience the GLMI difference.

Wrapping Up

Preparing for your medical imaging procedure can help ensure accurate results and a positive experience. By following the tips provided for each type of imaging, you can reduce anxiety and make the process smoother. At Great Lakes Medical Imaging in Buffalo, NY, we are dedicated to providing top-notch care to our patients across Western NY. For all your medical imaging needs, contact us today and let us help you achieve the best possible health outcomes.

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