Well I can surely understand. I aam claustaphobic (sp?) and MRI's are extrememly difficult for me. However, one of my Drs. told me that the pictures on a closed MRI, pick up more detail than the open ones. So, Up until my last MRI, I was able to make it through, using the closed machine, using various tactics. I always take valium (or what ever it is that the Dr. px.) and I end up taking the maximum amount. I take my own eye cover with me, that has a strap on it. My hospital will offer you a towel to put over your eyes, but it's white and it falls off your face easily, so I take my own dark tightly fit eye mask. I take a CD, which helps a lot, I tell the tech. that I am claustaphobic, but that I am going to give this a try. However, I NEED to know how long it would take, for him to get me out if I needed him too. I always take the "panic" button, that they have and keep my hands around it and on my stomach. It also takes me several tries of having the tech. put me in just a bit and bringing me out. Then I go in a little bit further etc. There was a time, that once I got in, I had a panic attack, so much so that I could not catch my breath, which led me to not be able to speak or yell for help. All I could think to do was to start kicking to try and get the techs. attn. (This all happened when I used their towel over my eyes and it fell off. I just slightly opened my eyes and that was the end of that. Hence, taking my own eye mask:)).
Now, the last time I went to the same hospital, they had just installed all new machines. They were a lot more narrow than the old ones and I tried over and over again, but I just could not do it. I ended up having to use the open one, which of course is so much easier. I had absolutly no problems with that machine, but I still believe that the closed ones do give better details. So, I thought that if I ever had to do that again, I would find a different location that has the closed machines that are wide enough for me to lay in without touching the sides.
(I guess I am lucky, in a sense, now that I have a stimulator in, I can't have any more MRI's:D).