MRI of the head uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce images of the brain, surrounding tissues and cranial structures. While the exam is commonly used to diagnose and monitor disorders that affect the brain like aneurysms, brain abscess, tumors, multiple sclerosis, etc., MRI capabilities exceed far beyond that. MRI of the head can also aid in determining the root cause of many other medical issues.
Hearing Loss and Speaking Difficulties
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, approximately 40 million Americans have communication disorders caused by hearing loss or speech problems. There can be several factors that cause such difficulties, and they almost always vary from patient to patient. MRI proves invaluable for determining the causes of such issues since it produces much clearer images and does not use radiation, unlike any other imaging tests.
Muscle Weakness or Numbness and Tingling
Some patients complain about experiencing muscle weakness or numbness and tingling. While these symptoms can seem quite insignificant compared to say, vision problems, they can actually indicate the existence of a more severe problem. Patients, therefore, should not ignore such signs. An MRI scan can reveal possible causes of these issues so that the patient can receive proper treatment.
Headaches with No Other Visible Symptoms
Headaches can also be indicative of something more serious, especially if no other symptoms or signs of illness are present. Doctors often order MRI exams to be conducted on the patient in this case. Imaging can show abnormalities in blood vessels, tissues or bones that could be causing the pain.
MRI is one of the most accurate and reliable tools for diagnosing diseases through non-invasive means. Follow-up exams may be ordered to monitor detected abnormalities or analyze the effects of treatments administered.
Head MRI, NYTimes.com
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) – Head, RadiologyInfo.org