As a low-radiation, pain-free and low-risk examination method, the MRI is particularly suitably for the diagnosis of young patients. However, as a child’s anatomy and psychology differs from that of an adult, children’s radiological MRI exams always pose a challenge. This is why few radiological facilities conduct child MRIs. Our partnered paediatric radiologists offer high-quality children’s radiological MRI exams at medneo within the framework of a special consultation. Our trained staff are good with children, explain the exam in terms they will understand and also involve you, the parent, in the examination process.
It doesn’t hurt...we promise!
There are different imaging techniques available for injuries or illnesses to make the body’s disease or injury-related changes visible. This is why an MRI exam is perfectly suited for use in children. It is pain-free, low-risk and has a unique level of diagnostic significance. Compared to X-rays or CT (computer tomography) scans, the MRI exam creates images using magnetic fields and not through the use of X-rays. So your child is not subjected to a dose of radiation. The special recording technique requires lying still during the approximately 15 minute exam. Experienced paediatric radiologists and medical technicians are usually able to get very good images from the patient without administering a relaxant. However, if your child will require a relaxant, sedative or anaesthesia for the exam, your paediatric radiologist will of course explain this in detail ahead of the procedure.
We make time for you
As early on as making your appointment, we cater to your time restrictions and tailor every appointment with the paediatric radiologist to your specific needs. We are just as sensitive and flexible with your child’s welfare in our diagnostics centre: we take the time you and your child need during the exam.
Your paediatric radiologist will explain everything to you and your child in detail in the pre-consultation. They will assess the risks and everything will be explained to you accurately and in a child-friendly way. The paediatric radiologist will answer any questions you might have during this consultation. Our goal is to take away the worry and anxiety. Because we know that when you’re not worried, your child usually isn’t either.
Please bring to the exam:
- Health insurance card and letter of referral
- child’s favourite cuddly toy
- their favourite blanket
- CD and drink
- preliminary findings
- previous images
- surgery reports, etc.
The examination procedure
After a friendly sign-in at reception, your child is prepared for the exam by our radiological assistant. All the details of the examination procedure are explained to you once more. You can ask questions and you and your child can get used to the exam room. As the exam noises are very loud, your child will get headphones so that they can listen to their favourite CD which you have brought with you. The body area being examined is positioned in a corresponding coil and fixed to reduce motion. This fixed positioning does not hurt your child. The 70cm wide opening of our MRI devices allows you lay down on the MRI platform or sit on a chair directly next to the device. You can also immediately spot any discomfort your child might feel and press the alarm button to signal for a break.
As soon as you hear the characteristic, loud knocking noises, the device is working and taking images. During this time it is very important that neither you nor your child moves. There are several short sequences one after the other that all sound different. You will be accompanied by our staff at every stage of the exam and be given precise information on each of the individual exam steps.
The image evaluation
Your paediatric radiologist examines the images after the exam. As up to 1,000 images are usually captured during an MRI scan, this usually takes around an hour. You receive the images directly after the exam. After the exam, the medical report is sent to the referring or family paediatrician or medical professional providing further treatment. Your paediatric radiologist will have a final consultation with you and your child after the exam. If required, we will gladly refer you to further specialists.
Do you have any questions?
We have put together some frequently asked questions for you. Please contact us directly using our Contact form or call us if you would like to know more and we will be glad to answer your questions.
Will the exam be painful for my child?
An MRI scan is pain-free and has no side effects. The only thing that can be uncomfortable for your child is the noise level caused by the rapid switching of the gradient fields and radio wave pulses needed to conduct the scan. You and your child are given headphones to protect your hearing. The exam itself is so uneventful that children often fall asleep during it.
What do I need to keep in mind near an MRI field?
In order to get good image quality and prevent incidents with the magnetic field, you should not take the following metal objects or electronic devices into the exam room: hearing aids, credit cards, loose change, wallets, keys, lighters, watches, jewellery, hair clips, glasses, removable dentures, belts. Your child should also not have any movable or loose metal parts such as metal buttons, zippers or metallic accessories. Stuffed animals or cuddly blankets can be taken into the exam room as long as they have no metal on them. If you or your child has undergone an operation involving the use of an implant, an MRI suitability certificate from the manufacturer is required in order to ensure that the implant is MRI-compatible.
Are there children for whom an MRI is only suitable with sedation or anaesthesia?
Despite all the good and calming explanations, there are some children who cannot stay calm during an MRI scan. Preschool children in particular are sometimes anxious and can be difficult to calm down. However, flawless images are required to make a confident diagnosis. If the restlessness and anxiety of your child prevents these images from being taken without sedation or anaesthesia, there are specialist anaesthesiologists available on-site who can ensure a successful exam.
Will my child’s examination require a contrast agent?
Contrast agents only need to be administered for the examination of certain types of tissue or pathological processes. The contrast agent is injected into your child through a vein. Unlike conventional x-ray contrast agents, the contrast agents used by medneo contain no iodine and are instead made from gadolinium. This results in far fewer unwanted side effects. If a contrast agent is required for your child’s exam, your paediatric radiologist will provide you with extensive information about possible risks.