Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, creates images of soft tissue and organ systems for use by health care professionals. The MRI technologist operates the machines used in creating these detailed images. They work alongside other healthcare professionals to assist them and the patient in creating useful scans with which doctors can make assessments and develop a treatment strategy. An MRI technologist must possess not only the technical knowledge to operate the machinery, but also needs to know techniques to situate the patient so scans are most useful to physicians and specialists. MRI technologist must have an excellent bedside manner with patients of all ages; if the technologist is assigned to a particular age group, they may need to have particular skills interacting with that demographic.
Additionally, the MRI technologist is in charge of keeping the equipment clean, as well as conducting regular assessments of equipment and documenting that it is in working order. Any supplies necessary for machine operation must remained stocked by the technologist as well.
MRI technologists generally need vocational or technical school training in the field; he or she then needs to pass a certification in one or more areas before a hospital or clinic will consider an applicant. In many cases, MRI technologists work during regular business hours hours, but in some larger facilities, techologists work a variety of day and evening shifts.
MRI Technologist Tasks
- Operate magnetic resonance imaging equipment to produce images of the body for diagnostic purposes.
- Monitor video display of area being scanned and adjust density or contrast to improve picture quality.
- Explain procedure to patient, position and immobilize patient on exam table and observe during scan under direction of physician.
- Use radiation safety measures and protection devices to comply with government regulations and to ensure safety of patients and staff.
- Review and evaluate computer generated information to determine if images are satisfactory for diagnostic purposes.