Services & Clinics

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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

The MRI suite is located at the Belleville General Hospital in the Diagnostic Imaging department. We currently perform most types of MRI exams including head, spine, extremity, organ, breast and vascular imaging. All of our technologists are registered with the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario and are committed to providing quality images and compassionate care to our community.

How to Book a MRI Exam

All MRI requisitions are triaged by a Radiologist. You will receive a letter in the mail stating your appointment time and how to prepare for your exam. Please read and follow the directions in your letter carefully, you may be required to have blood work or xrays of your eyes done before you are given an appointment time.

Please note:  Wait times for CT and MRI services in particular are longer than usual due to high demand and significant staffing shortages. Urgent cases such as cancer or other potentially life-threatening conditions are prioritized more quickly, which means that individuals with less urgent issues are most impacted by lengthy wait times. You can view and compare wait times for MRI and CT scans across Ontario by clicking here.  You can talk to your doctor about options for reducing your wait if a CT or MRI can be secured faster at a neighbouring hospital or imaging centre (e.g. Peterborough, Kingston, or Napanee).  Our team of dedicated staff and physicians are working hard to continue serving our communities as quickly as possible. Your patience and kindness is sincerely appreciated. 

Attending the MRI Exam

Please arrive at the Diagnostic Imaging department registration desk 45 minutes before the appointment time. Bring your health care card with you and leave all valuables at home.

MRI Exams and Sedation

If your doctor has prescribed a sedative for you, please DO NOT take it before speaking to the MRI technologist - you must arrive 1 hour prior to your appointment time, and have someone with you to drive you home.

Specific MRI exam information

MRI of an upper body bone or joint: This exam demonstrates the anatomy of the musculoskeletal structures of the upper limbs including the shoulder, humerus, elbow, forearm, wrist and hand. There is no preparation required for this exam.

MRI of a lower body bone or joint: This exam demonstrates the anatomy of the musculoskeletal structures of the lower limbs including the hip, femur, knee, tibula-fibula, ankle and foot. There is no preparation required for this exam.

MRI of the head: This exam demonstrates the anatomical structures of the head including the brain and the bony structures of the cranial vault. There is no preparation required for this exam.

MRI of the spine: This exam demonstrates the bony and musculoskeletal anatomy of the spinal column including the cervical, thoracic and lumbar segments. There is no preparation required for this exam.

MRI of the abdomen: This exam displays the anatomy of the upper abdomen including the liver, kidneys, pancreas, spleen, aorta, gallbladder, stomach and small intestine. DO NOT eat or drink for three (3) hours prior to your appointment time. If your doctor requires blood work to be done, ensure it has been done at least three (3) days before the exam.

MRI of the pelvis: This exam demonstrates the anatomy of the pelvis including the bladder, prostate, penis, uterus, ovaries and cervix. You maybe required to have a full bladder for this exam, please follow the instructions included on your appointment letter.

Vascular MRI: This exam demonstrates blood vessels. There is no preparation required for this exam.

MRI Arthrogram of a Joint: This exam demonstrates the articular surfaces of the joint. This is a lengthy, two part procedure and you may be with us for up to two hours. If this is an arthrogram of a hip you will need someone to drive you home. Arthrogram patients are required to arrive seventy five (75) minutes before their exam time.

Paediatric MRI: To ensure a successful pediatric MRI exam please follow the instructions provided in the patient letter and appointment reminder.

More information regarding paediatric sedation procedure: 

After your Exam

Most routine MRI exams do require any post exam care and you will be free to drive home. A Radiologist will report you exam and provide a copy to your physician.

Patient Information

For more information regarding types of MRI exams, please click here