WFUBMC to Operate First "Open" MRI in Forsyth County

July 13, 1999

The first "open" magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system in Forsyth County will be available to patients at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center the first week in August.

An MRI uses magnets, radio waves and computers to create extremely detailed images of internal organs and structures. It is used in numerous different medical diagnoses. The procedure is non-invasive and painless, but conventional MRI systems use a tubular enclosure that some patients find uncomfortable.

The magnet opening in the newer MRI is at least twice as large as in conventional scanners. The open system, which is also quieter than the conventional system, works well for people who are claustrophobic or anxiety prone, for children who need a parent present during the procedure, or for people who simply don''t fit into the conventional system.

"An MRI requires the cooperation of the patient, so anything we can do to help patients relax has important benefits," said Allen Elster, M.D., director of MR Imaging and Teleradiology at the Medical Center. "With this state-of-the-art system, patients are more comfortable, and we get even better images."

The telephone number for more information and MRI scheduling is (336) 716-3291.


Media Contact: Mark Wright, (336) 716-3382, or Jim Steele, (336) 716-3487.

Media Relations

Main Number:, 336-713-4587