Re: What does an MRI with and without contrast mean?
JLbrow, usually when the MRI is done with and without contrast, they will do the whole series of films as usual, then pull you out and administer the "dye" or contrasting solution (as Bearygood said, sometimes as an IV in the arm- completely painless and takes 20 seconds) then they put you back in the machine and repeat a few of the series...usually an additional 10 minutes or so...
MoSt people do not react to the contrast, a few do experience nausea or dizziness, which usually passes quickly. It is NOT the same "dye' used in a CT scan machine, which is usually iodine based...
Not only does the contrast help to pinpoint what is active, but it also helps to explain if a doctor thinks you might be having a relapse...active lesions= new lesions, thus either relapse, or progression.
Hope that helps.
RRMS- dx 05