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TedRothstein_161

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Reply with quote  #1 

MRI the machine, technique and sounds

Forewarned is forearmed (Search “MRI” on this site for other remarks).

I’ve had two MRIs in the last 12 months. The fir,st an “MRI HEAD w/o contrast” to rule out  “Acoustic Neuroma”, and the second, a few days ago for TMJ.*

For the uninitiated, seeing this machine for the first time, can be most INTIMIDATING. It's BIG. Moreover, being placed in one for the MRI procedure and listening to it scanning you can rattle the bejeezus out of you.

Since I was there for a “TMJ” MRI, it skipped my mind to place earplugs into my ear canals.  Besides they do put earphones on you which plays music that is supposed to dampen the NORMAL pounding noise the machine makes as it scans your head.

The human voice in normal talking is about 50-60 decibels; a high scream can reach about 80 decibels.  A jack-hammer starts at 95, and can range to 120. Prepare for an intense experience. Indeed, if you rattle easily, get your PCP to give you some anxiety med. Had I remembered, I would have taken 2mg of Valium.

The sound of an MRI varies from 80-115Db.  When I first heard it, it began scanning my right side, the one with H. It really rattled me and took every bit of my effort not to push the emergency alert button.  Here’s a vid where you can hear the actual sounds (turn your volume control up to the maximum your H. can stand). “MRI Scan SOUNDS”: 

Here is a table/guide showing you a variety of sounds in decibels:   http://www.gcaudio.com/resources/howtos/loudness.html

“The MRI SCAN:  What Happens”:

The second video is almost exactly what I experienced.  Notice the emergency stop button that the patient is holding.

FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED:  Feel free to email or call me at my office for comfort. 

*Ps: Eight minutes of scanning hammering noises with mouth closed and eight minutes with mouth held open.


 

 


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Ted Rothstein
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rodmccain

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Reply with quote  #2 
I have had chronic tinnitus and severe hyperacusis since an enclosed MRI three years ago.  I had double hearing protection, the same used for two open MRI's. 

I still have issues, have improved but not enough to have a normal life as before.  My Ent, audiologist,and neurotologist,  have written letters stating that I can no longer have MRI's due to the noise factor and my condition....ever.

I have a calcium deposit in my left knee joint, they are ordering a Ct scan with and without contrast.

If you have ever had any hearing sensitivity, and or tinnitus I would advice you have an alternative testing done.  I would hate to see anyone else go through the HELL I went through and am still going through.

Best regards to everyone on this forum!
Kathy
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TedRothstein_161

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Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodmccain
I have had chronic tinnitus and severe hyperacusis since an enclosed MRI three years ago.  I had double hearing protection, the same used for two open MRI's. 

I still have issues, have improved but not enough to have a normal life as before.  My Ent, audiologist,and neurotologist,  have written letters stating that I can no longer have MRI's due to the noise factor and my condition....ever.

I have a calcium deposit in my left knee joint, they are ordering a Ct scan with and without contrast.

If you have ever had any hearing sensitivity, and or tinnitus I would advice you have an alternative testing done.  I would hate to see anyone else go through the HELL I went through and am still going through.

Best regards to everyone on this forum!
Kathy

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Ted Rothstein
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TedRothstein_161

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Reply with quote  #4 

Reply to Kathy:
Bear with me--i'm try to learn how the "reply to post" works.  Hello Kathy...nice to meet you. Thanks for responding. I was beginning to think no one was ever going to respond.  However, now i  see  that the
post to response ratio is about 1 response/25 reads.

I get the idea that most current MRI machines are to be avoided like the plague since the sounds they emit actually make the conditions we want to know more about worse by their deafening, if not actually destructive nature to our aural anatomy.  As I said "forewarned is forearmed".  It did not occur to me that such harm was a possibility. Hence my article was written for the "uninitiated". 

I am fortunate that my condition is not nearly as bad as the suffering of so many of you out their. I am fairly certain that my hearing is slowly getting worse since I notice that more and more i am hearing, but not "getting" particular words. I certainly do my most to try to avoid noisy places--forget restaurants.

A recent audiologic screening I had shows my "hearing loss" drops off markedly in both ears in dBHI above 2000. MY SRT, Speech discrimination, and MCL  are about 40, (96.7 rt and 84.7 Lt) and 80   My right ear is the most affected (96.7) so if a high number means worse then it is understandable). 

Fortunately it has not  as yet affected my left ear and do not experience tinnitus.  I do have "fullness" bordering on pain that extends toward my right eye. In comparison to many of you others my suffering  is minimal.   Will it become worse?--probably is my guess.
 Even if no one responds this site allows you to speak to a community that knows what you are experiencing.     Ted




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Ted Rothstein
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rodmccain

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Reply with quote  #5 
Hello Ted,

Thanks for your response!

I have had a hearing test, and have no hearing loss.  Severe Hyperacusis from my understanding, is rare.  I only know what I experienced right after the MRI, having said that,  I had a previous hearing sensitivity, and T years ago from a water irrigation for impacted wax.  The severe T actually DID GO AWAY!  I think that is important for people to know!  I am told so many times that it never goes away, but I know from personal experience this is not always the case.  I did not habituate to it.  It left me with a SLIGHT hearing sensitivity that did not disrupt, my life.

So, I am thinking that the condition went into REMISSION, the MRI was too loud even with the double hearing protection, and my condition came back with a vengeance.  I believe it was not only the decibal level, but the FREQUENCIES of this particular machine.  The symptoms of this current T are somewhat different though.  I have had some improvement, but due to the fact this was induced by "noise trauma", I don't know if it will get any better.  I have also had some improvement in the Hyper.

All in all my hopes are that the medical community will develop a more "patient friendly" machine.

Yes, they are intimidating to say the least.  My therapist also said I had a form of PTST, of which I have only associated with our military men and women!

Do you have any amplified hearing, along with the hearing loss?  Maybe this is recruitment?  I hope you will find a specialist that can significantly improve the quality of your life !

Best regards,
Kathy 

 

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gardennut

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Reply with quote  #6 
Seems t o me I remember someone saying there is a less noisy MRI machine, but do not know where it or they are. Maybe someone else could recall...... IT frustrates me that ENT doctors         do not advocate for quieter methods of testing and  or treating peoples ears in general. Even wax removing by water irrigation or suction are both too noisy. What is wrong with these doctors ..... Are they looking for patients by ruining their ears...Is it just ignorance or lack of caring or what.......Donna
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Donna Keddie
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Amirai

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Reply with quote  #7 
I've heard some MRI machines are noisier than others. I'm not sure even the quietest is quiet enough, though.

And yeah, I'm suspicious that clearing the ear canal of wax via suction might have contributed to giving me h in the first place. I had a wax buildup problem and got my ears cleaned out that way several times, and I got the feeling that I really shouldn't have been exposing myself to something that loud each time he did it, but he was the doctor and should know better than me, right? Sigh...
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rodmccain

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Reply with quote  #8 
I never had a problem  with ear suction, but now that I have the hyper the ent says no.  The only way I can have a removal is manually.  I had one two days ago, went well. 

I have my letters stating from the Doctors, "no more MRI's due to noise risk."

Kathy
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janeygirl

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Reply with quote  #9 
When you have an MRI, DEFINITELY take your own ear muffs or ask ahead of time if they have theirs? Sometimes they say they do and then oops, it's not there the day you have your MRI. Also they do provide earplugs, try and bring your own too. I also learned thee was a right way of putting them in, you have to kind of squeeze them in there and then let them expand. Don't let them rush you until you do this. You can wear muffs if they have metal or if you are having certain parts of your body done. Some companies will play music. When in the MRI machine, I did deep breathing and meditated, I also pray a lot and one time I actually almost fell asleep. I was wearing muffs and plugs but the muted sounds I pretended that it was a rhythmic thing. When they said ok we're finished, I was almost asleep. Not good as you have to stay still.
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Jane Parks-McKay
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Tomcanon

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Reply with quote  #10 
I work as an MRI Territory Manager for Canon/Toshiba, our MRI scanners are uniquely designed with the gradient coil, the mechanism that causes the noise, placed inside a vacuum chamber.  This vacuum decreases MRI acoustic noise by 34 dB or 90% (no ear plugs) compared to other MRI manufacturers on all scans.  If you were standing in the room of another MRI manufacturer while it was running with 34dB earplugs, that would be the Canon/Toshiba scanner noise generated without earplugs.   In addition, we have just developed advanced sequence technology that take the loudest sequences and make them the quietest. Pianissimo Zen achieves 99% acoustic noise reduction.  I understand your issues with MRI and welcome any questions you may have.  Toshiba scanners are the quietest scanners available at both 1.5T and 3 T.
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rodmccain

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Reply with quote  #11 
My MRI was done with a Siemens Espree 2008.   Way too loud, they should be banned. They
did not have the machine you are posting about available at the time of my test.  A tragedy for me.  It ruined my hearing and my life, but then you are probably aware of that fact, as I am not the first.  I never could fathom why a medical test has to be so horribly loud !!!   


Kathy McCain
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rodmccain

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Reply with quote  #12 
Yes...it definitely can make it worse....BUT I was fine before this enclosed MRI !!  I also had the same hearing protection I used in the past for OPEN MRI's !

My ENT says "no more MRI's for you!"   I tell my doctors the same thing....NEVER AGAIN, I don't care how "quiet" they are.  

Kathy McCain
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Aplomado

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Reply with quote  #13 
Cleaning ear canals with water / suction is unsafe for anyone.... some folks get hyperacusis from it.
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gardennut

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Reply with quote  #14 
Good to hear from Tomcanon that there has been some recognition and action on making MIR's quieter. Thanks for that .... Donna
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Donna Keddie
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