What Can an MRI Detect?

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Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, is a test that can detect disease or tissue damage such as inflammation, infection, stroke, tumors and seizures, according to WebMD. An MRI can see information about the body that is not visible through other means such as an X-ray, CT scan or ultrasound.

MRI testing is often done on the head, and it uses a combination of radio waves and magnetic energy to see inside of the body, as explained by WebMD. It can be done for a variety of reasons, including to look for the cause of headaches or to help diagnose a stroke. It is also used to see the brain following injury or to examine the brain of those with brain diseases. MRI is also utilized when water on the brain is suspected, to seek out tumors or to confirm results from another test. It is also common to use an MRI when doctors need to see the pituitary gland, or when looking at the nerves from the eyes or ears.

The information that is gained from an MRI is often studied by a number of doctors, including radiologists, surgeons and neurologists, as WebMD explains. This information is often stored on a computer and manipulated to see different views of the area. Results also are printed, and viewed by doctors and other technicians.