Pediatric MRI without general anesthesia

Some children are able to complete MRI’s without general anesthesia.  Each child is different and parents can best determine if this is a possibility.

  • A Child Life Specialist can also help you assess this option and provide information.  
  • Cinemavision movie goggles are available for some types of MRIs.  This distraction tool allows children to watch a DVD throughout the MRI. 
  • A parent or trusted adult is welcome to remain in the room to further increase a sense of security for your child (the technologist will screen the adult to be sure it is safe for them to be in the MRI room, i.e .  for pacemakers or other metal inside the body)
  • If you are interested in the movie goggles, please inform the staff when scheduling your appointment.
  • After the MRI is complete, your child can pick out a prize and enjoy the rest of the day!

Pediatric MRI with general anesthesia

If your child is completing his or her MRI with anesthesia (asleep), here are some useful guidelines:

  • A nurse will call you before your appointment with important preparation instructions
  • A Child Life Specialist is available to prepare your child and help him/her feel more comfortable in the hospital setting.  
  • Your anesthesiologist, nurse and technologist will meet with you before the exam starts to explain the process and answer questions.
  • You are welcome to stay with your child until they fall asleep with anesthesia.
  • After your child drifts off to sleep, you will be asked to return to the waiting room until the MRI is complete.
  • Your child will wake up and “recover” from the anesthesia in the Children’s Surgery Center (CSC).  You can follow your child as they push him/her by gurney from the MRI to recovery area.