12 doctors weighed in:

Are MRI's as safe as they are said to be? Is it possible in the future that MRI's will be revealed to be unsafe ?

12 doctors weighed in
3 doctors agree

In brief: I agree Dr. Rhoads

Just in the past few years gadolinium contrast (thought to be totally benign) now requires some institutions clear their patients' renal functions with an EGFR before injecting the dye.
There is a recommended limit of 3-5 MRI's for a pregnant woman. The most accurate statement is that "We are unaware of significant harmful effects of MRI to patients." Focus on the word, "UNAWARE."

In brief: I agree Dr. Rhoads

Just in the past few years gadolinium contrast (thought to be totally benign) now requires some institutions clear their patients' renal functions with an EGFR before injecting the dye.
There is a recommended limit of 3-5 MRI's for a pregnant woman. The most accurate statement is that "We are unaware of significant harmful effects of MRI to patients." Focus on the word, "UNAWARE."
Dr. Dariush Saghafi
Dr. Dariush Saghafi
Thank
2 comments
Dr. Michael Gabor
Considering the mountain of data supporting the safety profile of MRI, and the lack of data supporting harmful effects, after decades of worldwide use on millions of patients, the probability that MRI will ever be shown to cause significant harm is exceedingly small.
Dr. Richard Roberts
I don't think mixing up dangers of contrast media with the MRI itself should be done. I developed an anaphylactic reaction to Renograffin (kidney x-ray dye) as a boy (long, long ago).
Dr. Susan Rhoads
Family Medicine
3 doctors agree

In brief: No way to predict.

Many things in medicine were used for hundreds of years and then found out to be harmful.
We don't know everything yet, no one does. With time and study and experience we add to our knowledge. Sometimes what seems to be a good practice now, is found to be less helpful than we believe or has long-term effects that are impossible to predict. MRI's are a relatively recent invention.

In brief: No way to predict.

Many things in medicine were used for hundreds of years and then found out to be harmful.
We don't know everything yet, no one does. With time and study and experience we add to our knowledge. Sometimes what seems to be a good practice now, is found to be less helpful than we believe or has long-term effects that are impossible to predict. MRI's are a relatively recent invention.
Dr. Susan Rhoads
Dr. Susan Rhoads
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Susan Rhoads
As the other doctors have said, it appears to be safe generally. But no one could or should say it is 100% safe now and forever. There are some concerns, especially of its effects to the fetus in the first 3 months of pregnancy. http://www.radiology.ucsf.edu/patient-care/patient-safety/ct-mri-pregnancy MRI is certainly safer than other X-rays and should not be withheld in serious cases.
Dr. Paul Velt
Diagnostic Radiology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Very safe

as of today, there is now evidence to suggest otherwise.
MRI has been around a long time and when used appropriately extremely safe.

In brief: Very safe

as of today, there is now evidence to suggest otherwise.
MRI has been around a long time and when used appropriately extremely safe.
Dr. Paul Velt
Dr. Paul Velt
Thank
Dr. Michael Gabor
Diagnostic Radiology
2 doctors agree

In brief: It is

highly improbable that MRI will ever be shown to be unsafe.
There is a 30 year history of safety, and the science/physics do not predict any harmful consequences from diagnostic use.

In brief: It is

highly improbable that MRI will ever be shown to be unsafe.
There is a 30 year history of safety, and the science/physics do not predict any harmful consequences from diagnostic use.
Dr. Michael Gabor
Dr. Michael Gabor
Thank
Dr. Richard Roberts
Clinical Genetics
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Yes safe. No Future

There is no ionizing radiation as in x-rays. It is no more dangerous than a powerful magnet to you. As I am not expecting the laws of physics to change no one at this time can figure out how this might become harmful.

In brief: Yes safe. No Future

There is no ionizing radiation as in x-rays. It is no more dangerous than a powerful magnet to you. As I am not expecting the laws of physics to change no one at this time can figure out how this might become harmful.
Dr. Richard Roberts
Dr. Richard Roberts
Thank
2 comments
Dr. Saptarshi Bandyopadhyay
Not true. There's some evidence that the wavelength of radiofrequencies emitted by the nuclei r about twice the diameter of the human head. In that situation (theoretically, anyway) electric fields can constructively interfere, making the human skull essentially a resonance chamber. The bioeffects of "resonant" electric fields on the brain is a subject of debate, but a mechanism based on physics.
Dr. Richard Roberts
What you are discussing is theoretical, but disproven by huge epidemiological studies. People thought that perhaps the magnetic fields crated by cell phones might cause brain cancer or other neurological effects, and prior to that, the effects of electrical fields on humans living under power lines were theorized to cause cancer and other nasties. The epidemiological studies showed no effects.
Dr. Saptarshi Bandyopadhyay
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice

In brief: 2 separate questions

We can only go by pre-existing data & our experience w/ prior pts 2 answer ur question.
MRIs appear 2 b safe so far- very few adverse reactions when proper precdautions r taken (get rid of all metal; no pacemakers or implants allowed; avoid if claustrophobic, etc.). It is ALWAYS possible that, in the future, scientists find harmful effects of MRI that we don't know abt today. Knowledge changes.

In brief: 2 separate questions

We can only go by pre-existing data & our experience w/ prior pts 2 answer ur question.
MRIs appear 2 b safe so far- very few adverse reactions when proper precdautions r taken (get rid of all metal; no pacemakers or implants allowed; avoid if claustrophobic, etc.). It is ALWAYS possible that, in the future, scientists find harmful effects of MRI that we don't know abt today. Knowledge changes.
Dr. Saptarshi Bandyopadhyay
Dr. Saptarshi Bandyopadhyay
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Richard Roberts
I would add that in all procedures of any sort, we must weigh the risks versus the benefits. The MRI has opened a world of accurate diagnoses of what is going on in our bodies that have prove to be immensely beneficial to mankind. After decades of study, we have no evidence of any harm. So--the odds of benefit a huge, and at the moment the odds of harm are about as close to 0 as we can get.
Get help from a real doctor now
Dr. Marsha Davis
Board Certified,
24 years in practice
67M people helped
Continue
108,000 doctors available
Read more answers from doctors