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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

MRI is a noninvasive, usually painless test that uses a powerful magnetic field, radio waves and a computer to produce detailed pictures of organs, soft tissues, bone and other internal body structures. Unlike conventional X-rays and computed tomography (CT) scans, MRI does not depend on radiation. In February of 2006, St. Mary’s Hospital installed a Siemens Avanto with TIMS technology, 32 channels of RF and 76 surface coils making it the most technologically advanced 1.5T in central Illinois. In addition, our MRI is equipped with CINEMA-VISION goggles that allow patients to view television, DVD’s, or videotapes during their examination. It has proved to be very helpful for patients who have had difficulty with claustrophobia in the past. Children have also found comfort with the goggles, greatly reducing the need for sedation.

All Technologists are licensed by IEMA and registered through ARRT.

As a Patient

  • MRI uses strong magnets, so you will be asked to remove your watch, jewelry, and other metal objects.
  • You may be asked to remove your makeup, which may contain some metal.
  • The test takes 30-60 minutes.
  • You may be injected with contrast (a special “dye” that improves the MRI image).
  • You will lie down on a platform that slides into the magnet.
  • After your test, you can get back to normal activities right away. If you were given contrast, it will pass naturally through your body within a day.


  • Siemens Avanto with TIMS technology, 1.5T


  • Monday through Friday - 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • After hours, images are transmitted via teleradiology systems for a preliminary interpretation from a radiologist.
  • Questions? Call us, 217-464-7589.