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Old 01-12-2012, 04:15 PM   #1
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MRI for the super obese

I am a super obese women that suffers from head pressure and aura migraines. Just 2 weeks ago went to ER due to head pressure and was not able to have a CT scan due to my weight. Due to that I was sent home with vicodine and water pills guessing thats what I needed. Was told to diet and come back when I weighed the capacity limit of the CT scan. Even worse I was told to call and research to see where I could get an MRI done. I have been going crazy. Am I the only obese person in the world?

 
Old 01-13-2012, 05:52 AM   #2
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Here in Cincinnati there is a very large CT scanner at the stadium for the Cincinnati Bengals which is also open for doctors to use for extremely obese patients. You may want to ask your doctor if there's anything like that near you.

 
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Old 01-13-2012, 02:02 PM   #3
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Re: MRI for the super obese

I'm sorry you are facing this. I've been in your shoes in a very tiny way...... I got stuck in an MRI.

I'm only 5'2" and used to be over 250lbs....I know that isn't super obese but I was big enough and round enough to not be able to get in an MRI. I had to have one on my knee and the doc thought I'd be okay since only half of me had to go in but when they slid me in, it had to go all the way up my armpits and my chest got stuck(well endowed and fat is trouble!). They got me loose and I took off my sweatshirt and used only a johnny and it was a little better so they did the MRI. That was the day I knew I had to lose weight because I am prone to strokes with high blood pressure and I might really need an MRI someday.

But I am a lazy person by nature so I lost enough to fit into an MRI...went down to about 220. I now fit even if it was a tight fit in an open MRI. Then a doc told me why the MRI machines are so tight. Apparently, the larger they make the machine with the magnets farther apart, the worse the image. My neurologist said that even an open MRI was too big to get a good picture. He would only use a closed/regular tube-like MRI machine and if you didn't fit.....too bad. Not his problem. So I vowed to lose more and I'm now under 200 and do fit the regular MRI machine. I want to lose more if I can but it is so hard. Who thought an MRI machine would finally make me want to lose weight...not me for sure!

So it's not that they don't make larger machines but that the larger they make them, the worse they show...especially with the brain.They can only make them so big before they don't get any pics at all. I do know that they are now making machines that are shorter in that you don't have to slide the entire body in just to get your head done. And they even have small machines to do arms and ankles. You need to call around and see who has those newer shorter machines that you might be able to use. I imagine the larger the medical facility, the more they might have. You could even try calling the office of a bariatric surgeon and see if his staff know where the larger machines are.....they must order some and they have the super obese patients.

I know having this happen to me in a much lesser way than you are being treated got me to realize that I although I was happy and healthy, my future was going to be pretty hard if I continued to be bigger than most. Medical science is geared to the "norm" and if I didn't want to be the size of the "normal" person than they really didn't care. That is reality. Medicine sees us as doing this to ourselves and they aren't responsible for what happens to us.

I hope you can find an MRI that you can use. I'm sorry that this has hit you as it did me and many, many others.

Jenny

 
Old 01-13-2012, 02:16 PM   #4
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Thank you for your response. I have done all the research and calling I can do and have been turned away from all. It just makes me feel like the only obese person around. I have called a bariatic surgeon and was told they have never dealt with someone over 425 lbs. I have been trying to lose weight all my life. At times I succeed and at times I fail. Its been a big struggle for me. All I know is that I need a place that can perform an MRI on me. I know in Canada they have MRI machines that hold up to 680 lbs, but I am in California. There has to be somewhere closer.

 
Old 01-13-2012, 03:15 PM   #5
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Have you considered contacting manufacturers and asking about the bigger machines and then asking if they have any in the area if California where you are....or the nearest one to you. If you know they have the large ones in Canada, can you find out the manufacturer?

I know Siemens is one but I guess if you do a search, you can find the different makers and you might even find out who makes the bigger ones(I should be using the words "takes up to a 680 lb patient" but my fingers are stiff from Ra today). Then ask them where you can find them...might work?????

Jenny

 
Old 01-13-2012, 09:07 PM   #6
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Why do they carry big CT scanners like that at the stadiums? It doesn't hurt to ask my Dr though. I am desperate to find a place that can scan my brain due to my head pressure.

 
Old 01-14-2012, 02:58 PM   #7
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Re: MRI for the super obese

CTs and MRIs work totally different. CT's use x-ray technology whereas MRI's use magnetic technology and need to be closer together to get the magnets to work on your cells.

Good luck in finding one.....I hope you do and soon.

Jenny

 
Old 01-23-2012, 01:31 PM   #8
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Quote:
Originally Posted by jsweetlips34 View Post
Why do they carry big CT scanners like that at the stadiums? It doesn't hurt to ask my Dr though. I am desperate to find a place that can scan my brain due to my head pressure.
They have them at the stadium because football players, who need CT scans quite often when they get injured, are very big people who don't fit in normal sized CT scanners.

 
Old 02-26-2013, 02:56 PM   #9
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Smile Re: MRI for the super obese

Quote:
Originally Posted by jsweetlips34 View Post
I am a super obese women that suffers from head pressure and aura migraines. Just 2 weeks ago went to ER due to head pressure and was not able to have a CT scan due to my weight. Due to that I was sent home with vicodine and water pills guessing thats what I needed. Was told to diet and come back when I weighed the capacity limit of the CT scan. Even worse I was told to call and research to see where I could get an MRI done. I have been going crazy. Am I the only obese person in the world?
Hello...350 pounds and live in Orange County Ca I am having trouble finding a Ct scan / MRI Machine to accommodate my weight. It's funny because I go to UCI Medical Center which is a huge hospital and asked my doctor if I was the fattest patient to ever go to UCI when she told me about my weight and me not fitting in the scanner. Please let me know if you had any luck and thank you

 
Old 04-17-2013, 02:04 PM   #10
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Re: MRI for the super obese

Ugh.. that was truly unprofessional of them. Many people are obese and they obviously need MRI's too. I have had the same issue though. I am obese and I have to have MRI's done because I have Arnold Chiari Malformation. When I went to have an MRI of my spine done... I couldn't fit comfortably and I had to make an appointment with a different place. It was not only embaracing but also humiliating. The woman was actually very nice though. She didnt want to see me get burned or anything. Still though, I can completely relate. I would try to find an open MRI place or something. Good luck.

 
Old 06-03-2013, 03:47 AM   #11
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Smile Re: MRI for the super obese

Quote:
Originally Posted by jsweetlips34 View Post
I am a super obese women that suffers from head pressure and aura migraines. Just 2 weeks ago went to ER due to head pressure and was not able to have a CT scan due to my weight. Due to that I was sent home with vicodine and water pills guessing thats what I needed. Was told to diet and come back when I weighed the capacity limit of the CT scan. Even worse I was told to call and research to see where I could get an MRI done. I have been going crazy. Am I the only obese person in the world?
There are several obese people present in US. I donít know is there MRI machine for obese available or not but you can go for natural weight loss supplements.

 
Old 07-19-2013, 12:47 PM   #12
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Unhappy Re: MRI for the super obese

Unfortunately I am also in the same situation. I too live in So. Cal and a specialist is concerned that I might have a growth on my brain so I needed an MRI. I am a 6'5" 405lbs. man. I did get an "open" machine today but the face mask pressed so deep in my throat I couldn't swallow and had a hard time breathing. THEN I found that the top of the machine would push my stomach 1-2 inches in which was not safe.... I was sent away. Do I cross my fingers and hope nothing is wrong? I sure feel like there is little to no hope to get this checked. If I didn't have 2 young kids that depend on me for their survival i probably wouldn't care.
You would think with all the reports that Americans are the most obese in the world and with so many people who are obese why are there no MRI machines that can help? to just say "lose weight" is nice, however what if the reason I need an MRI could be the cause of my extensive weight gain? Where do i go from here?

 
Old 07-23-2013, 09:08 AM   #13
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Re: MRI for the super obese

I don't know how much you weigh, but wide bore MRI machines can handle patients up to 550 lbs and have image quality up to 3 tesla, which - basically no dr would need an image better than that. I go in them because I am claustrophobic and because of my weight the regular MRI pinches my arms together and definitely makes the claustrophobia worse. They have one here: http://www.memorialcare.org/services/imaging-radiology/imaging-radiology-orange-coast-memorial which is near you based on the town you have listed here (Santa Ana).

 
Old 07-31-2013, 12:37 PM   #14
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Re: MRI for the super obese

I live in a rural area and the only option for pt that do not fit the scanner is to use the one at a zoo located about 150 miles away. It is not only scanners that have weight limits but some life support machines do too. Our ventilators (that we use to breathe for pts) have a weight limit as well.

 
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