Experience of MRI (MRCP) scan


I arrived at the hospital and eventually found the imaging suite. The nurse handed me a backless gown and I was told to change into it in the changing rooms. I did this quickly and was able to put my clothes and bag into a locker. At the last minute I remembered to take out my earrings, as you are not allowed to wear any metal. I kept my glasses on though. I brought my crocs and kept my socks on, as last time my feet were cold. I came out and sat on the chair in the waiting area. I kept my fleece on as the backless gown was somewhat revealing!

When it was my turn, I asked the nurse if I could have some music on. She said ‘Of course’, and I handed her my CD. I went through a door labelled with radiation signs and into the room with the scanner. The nurse took my glasses and I was asked to lie down on a narrow bench. I lay down and the nurse spent a few minutes repositioning me and wrapping ‘belts’ round me. She then said it was time for me to enter the scanner. She positioned the emergency button near my hand, and pressed the button to move me into the scanner, and left the room. The bench moved into the scanner, my feet entering first, until I was completely in the small tunnel. It was quite small, and I tried not to think of how little room there was. Luckily, the music began so I concentrated on that.

A voice interrupted the music to check I was Ok and that I could hear OK. I replied yes, wondering how they could hear me from the other room. Then the clicking started: click click click Nurrrrrrrrrrr. Bang!

The noises are quite something but not scary.

The nurse told me to relax my breathing – the imaging had begun! After a while, she told me on her signal, I was to hold my breath. It seemed like forever but this was important and the scanner was getting images of my bile ducts and I had to keep perfectly still (and not even breathe). Each breath hold felt like a long time but in reality it was probably 20 seconds or so.

After about half an hour, it was all done! The nurse appeared and reversed me out of my tunnel, and I was allowed to collect my glasses and go and get dressed. They said they’d send the results to my consultant within a week.

That was it! I quite like MRCPs now I am used to them.

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