Categories: MRI scan

What is a Full Body MRI?

Introduction

A Full Body MRI scan(or whole-body MRI) consists of several MRIs (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scans done with the to identify any potential issues in the body (such as cancer, inflammation or other abnormalities) before any symptoms arise. Full body MRIs can allow patients to detect potential problems in their bodies while they are still in its earliest stages and while effective treatment is still possible.

This scan can be useful for patients who don’t have any symptoms but want an overview of their current health (compared to a diagnostic test). A Full Body MRI examines up to four sections to identify cancers, obstructions, and inflammation or obstructive processes. It focuses on the brain, heart, arteries, and colon, as well as other surrounding tissues.

The whole process takes around an hour with several breaks to ensure the patient’s comfort and to set up the necessary equipment.

MRI vs CT Scan

Compared to CT scans, MRIs have been found to discover more lesions and correctly characterize a disease, whether benign or malignant. Therefore it
is to be used as a screening test to identify any potential issues in the body

Benefits

  • Early detection of disease
  • Maximizes one’s chances of successful treatment and cure
  • Non-invasive, compared to a biopsy
  • No exposure to radiation, compared to a CT scan

Risks

  • False-positive results – an incorrect detection of disease by the screening study when no disease is present

For this reason, we recommend consulting with a doctor before getting a Full Body MRI. Any signs of abnormality which suggest any disease will be followed by further tests to make sure the diagnosis is as accurate and complete as possible.

How much does a Full Body MRI cost?

As with any other type of medical imaging, the cost varies by location and insurance type. Below you will find the price ranges for different types of clinics and insurances in the US:

Insurance TypeClinicHospital
Insured (25% co-pay)$1,800 – $3,200$2,100 – $6,000
High-deductible plan$2,800 – $9,600$8,100 – $24,000
Self-pay (Cash)$1,000 – $1,600$2,000 – $8,000

How to save on a Full Body MRI?

  • Shop around for the best price (see the facilities in your area)
  • Ask about all the fees – do they include the cost of the radiologist reading?
  • Take your doctor’s referral with you to another facility. Your referral might be issued to one of the most expensive hospitals in the country
  • Look for facilities that work with a tele-radiologist, those provide lower reading costs
  • Use a patient concierge service such as AffordableScan to get a quote and schedule an appointment. We’ll be happy to assist you
AffordableScan Team

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