Abdominal MRI is a technique for noninvasive visualization of the internal organs of the peritoneal and retroperitoneal space. The study of this region may include MRI of the liver, biliary tract, pancreas, intestines, urinary system, adrenal glands, mesenteric vessels, a comprehensive study of the structures of the abdominal cavity. The diagnostic possibilities of the study are extremely wide – it is the identification of the prophets of development, inflammatory diseases, injuries, volumetric formations of organs, the source of bleeding from the gastrointestinal tract, choledocholithiasis and strictures of the biliary tract.
The procedure should be carried out with:
- constant or frequent abdominal pain of varying degrees of intensity in the stomach area, in the left or right hypochondrium;
- regular nausea and vomiting;
- increased urination, changes in the volume and color of urine, as well as the presence of discomfort during emptying of the bladder;
- changing the consistency of the stool;
- jaundice of the skin, sclera, mucous membranes;
- pronounced swelling of the extremities;
- detection of blood impurities in the urine.
If there are indications, the patient can independently sign up for an MRI of the abdominal cavity. But more often, the study is prescribed by a doctor to confirm the diagnosis and assess the severity of pathological changes.
You will need to undergo an MRI procedure after receiving abdominal injuries. It is included in the list of mandatory studies in preparation for surgery. MRI is necessarily performed after surgery, which allows you to check its effectiveness. With the help of the obtained images, the doctor can identify the earliest postoperative complications. The procedure is also prescribed to evaluate the effectiveness of conservative treatment of various parts of the gastrointestinal tract and organs of the urinary system.
- 1st trimester of pregnancy;
- the presence of a built-in pacemaker, vascular stents or other metal implants prone to magnetization;
- the presence of metal foreign bodies, fragments or large tattoos made with metal-containing paints in the body;
- hyperkinesis, sudden muscle spasms;
- chronic renal failure and allergy to gadolinium (MRI with contrast is contraindicated).
Since MRI is done in a special device in the form of a closed tube, it cannot be used to examine patients weighing more than 150 kg due to the design features of tomographs.
With caution, the diagnosis of various parts of the gastrointestinal tract and kidneys can be performed for:
- mental disorders;
- fear of confined spaces;
- severe conditions of the patient with the maintenance of the functions of vital organs.
If an MRI of the abdominal cavity is required for women during lactation, this is not associated with any restrictions. But in cases where it is necessary to use contrast, it is necessary to create a stock of breast milk in advance or transfer the child to artificial feeding for 2-3 days, since gadolinium compounds penetrate into breast milk and can negatively affect the baby’s well-being. During these days, a woman needs to express herself regularly to avoid problems with lactation in the future.
In order for the abdominal MRI to be as informative as possible, the patient should completely abandon the use of legumes, carbonated drinks, flour and other products that are difficult to digest or provoke increased gas formation in the intestine 2 days before the procedure. The study is carried out directly on an empty stomach. Therefore, at least 6 hours before the procedure, you need to refuse to eat.
To remove gases from the intestines, you can first take a carminative. It is also important to take an antispasmodic pill before the examination, and empty the intestines and bladder.
You need to come to the diagnosis in the “right” clothes. It should be completely free of any metal elements, including underwear. Belts, earrings, watches and other jewelry can be worn, but they will need to be removed before the study.
Which is better than CT or MRI of the abdominal cavity?
If it is necessary to conduct an OBP study, there are no questions about whether an MRI of the abdominal cavity is informative and whether it is better to do a CT scan. It is this method of diagnosing diseases of the bile ducts, pancreas, liver and other organs that allows you to get the most reliable information about their condition and detect minimally pronounced pathological changes.
Therefore, if there are no contraindications, MRI is always preferred. Only this method can provide comprehensive information about the state of the internal organs of the abdominal cavity and retroperitoneal space, unlike CT. CT can be used for suspected kidney and ureter stones, as this method allows you to better visualize dense formations and determine their nature.
An additional advantage of MRI over CT is the absence of radiation load on the body. Therefore, this study can be carried out as often as the situation requires without any negative consequences for the body. CT is also recommended to be done no more than 1 time in 6 months.