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Radiology

High-Field Open MRI Offers Patients a Better View

High-Field Open MRI Offers Patients a Better View Several years ago Bill Taylor’s physician ordered an MRI. To Bill, the machine resembled a long tube—he felt confined and couldn’t complete the test.

“I have claustrophobia,” Bill says. “But I was still having issues with my lumbar spine (lower back) and the MRI was necessary.”

When it was time for another MRI, Bill’s experience was different. He requested an open MRI machine. Lee Memorial Health System’s Hitachi Oasis high-field open MRI allowed him the space to breathe, and Cindy Huitema, the MRI technologist suggested music and a small cloth for his eyes, which eased his anxiety. He completed the test in about 40 minutes.

“It went perfectly,” Bill says. “I highly recommend high- field open MRI for anyone who needs one.”

Peter Kouba, lead MRI technologist, Outpatient Radiology at Riverwalk, says that the Oasis high-field open MRI helps patients who would otherwise struggle to complete the test. “This is a great option for patients who are claustrophobic, have mobility challenges or are elderly,” he says. “It’s also a good option for overweight patients whose size may prevent them from undergoing the test in a closed MRI.”

One immediate benefit of the high-field open MRI is the outstanding image quality—it provides maximum diagnostic performance and uncompromised patient comfort.

Patients are much more comfortable because there are no sides to the machine to constrict a patient. “The architectural design of the machine offers a 270-degree, unobstructed view,” Peter says. “Patients’ family or friends are allowed to comfort them, by sitting and holding their hand, during an exam.”

The MRI suite was specifically designed with a wall of windows which overlooks Whiskey Creek Preserve, allowing the patient to look out into the preserve as his or her exam is performed. Patients also are able to watch movies on the monitor that is located within the MRI suite.

The high-field open MRI is used for neurologic, orthopedic, body and vascular imaging that is not available in other types of open MRI imaging machines. The Oasis has been the top-rated open system by many industry experts since it came to market just a few years ago, says Mark Williams, director of Outpatient Imaging. “Our machine is the only high-field open MRI in our area,” he says. “Simply put, we chose the very best MRI of its type that the industry had to offer.”

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“This is a great option for patients who are claustrophobic, have mobility challenges or are elderly, ” says Peter Kouba, lead MRI technologist. “It’s also a good option for overweight patients whose size may prevent them from undergoing the test in a closed MRI.”

Outpatient Radiology at Riverwalk

Riverwalk Map

  • Outpatient Radiology at Riverwalk*
  • 12600 Creekside Lane, Fort Myers, FL 33919
  • To schedule an appointment, call 239-424-1499

Evening and Saturday Radiology appointments now available. Call 239-424-1499

* An outpatient department of Lee Memorial Hospital

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Bringing MRI out in the Open

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