This page contains information that we would like you to be aware of before you come to the Center to participate in an MRI experiment.
First, you may want to know that MRI is a very safe technology. The only real danger comes from the strength of the magnetic field in the scanner room if certain conditions exist for the experimental participants. This danger is easily dealt with by complying with precise exclusion criteria. If you have never been a subject before, here are a few items you should know:
- You will have to remove all ferrous metal (meaning most things that have iron in them) from your body before entering the scanner.
- Surgically implanted metal anywhere in your body, but particularly in the head, can pose a significant risk. It constitutes an exclusion factor.
- It is a good idea not to wear eye makeup - tiny metal bits in mascara, for example, can move in the magnetic field and irritate your eyes.
- Dental work does not usually pose problems, but if you currently are undergoing extensive orthodontic treatment, you should verify with your orthodontist that you are safe to be in the MRI environment.
- Some (mostly older) tattoos can tingle or burn with exposure to a strong magnetic field (if there is iron in the ink). We will not allow scanning if you have several such tattoos.
- Credit cards will be completely erased if they are brought into the magnet room. These must be left outside of the magnet room.
- Avoid wearing metal jewelry and clothing with metal – zippers are fine, but chains and bras with underwire are not.
- On the day of the scan, if you wear glasses (or contacts), you will probably need to remove them during the actual scan. MR compatible glasses will be provided for you to wear instead.
If you have questions about participating in the study, please do not hesitate to contact directly the researcher responsible for the study in which you are participating.
For a more detailed review of possible safety concerns, please see the Subject Screening Form [pdf]. When you arrive at Room 24A in the Psychology Building, you will be provided with this form and other forms. You are encouraged to ask questions before signing the forms in the presence of the researcher.
We are located in the Psychology Building on the Ohio State University Columbus Campus.
It is also important for you to know that although our research scans are not meant to be medically diagnostic, the first time that you participate in a MRI study you will be asked to give permission for a brain scan image to be sent to an affiliated neuroradiologist for review. In the rare case of a detected abnormality, you or your designated physician will be notified by the neuroradiologist. If you participate in future experiments, additional medically diagnostic images will be obtained at yearly intervals.
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