Radiology Exam: Prostate MRI

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a strong magnetic field instead of X-rays to provide remarkably clear and detailed pictures of internal organs, such as the prostate gland. MRI requires specialized equipment to allow evaluation of the prostate with detail that is not available with other imaging methods.

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How to Prepare

Have light meals the day prior and a light/liquid (non-carbonated) diet the day of your exam. For morning appointments, take a fleet enema the night prior. For appointments after noon, take a fleet enema the morning of your exam.

Please bring your prescribed medication with you on the day of your exam.

Inform your referring physician about any implants you may have in your body, which may not be compatible with the strong magnetic field of the MR scanner. Your physician and MRI technologist will ensure that all previous surgeries and implants are safe prior to the imaging.

Some patients may get claustrophobic inside the MRI magnet and may require light sedation. Please speak with your doctor if you feel you may need to be sedated for the duration of the exam.

What to Expect

Patients may experience a warming sensation from the endorectal coil. In very rare cases, localized heating of the body could occur due to the radio waves emitted from the MRI, where skin temperature elevates at the location of the abdominal coil or endorectal coil. If you feel a heating sensation, please notify the MRI technologist immediately. However, the MR scanner and the MR coil have been designed to prevent this from happening, and there have been no reports of local heating in patients scanned to date.

What to Expect During Your MRI Exam

Learn about the people and technology involved during your MRI exam at Johns Hopkins Medical Imaging.

Learn more about MRI in our Health Library