MR Safety

The Static Magnetic Field is the main magnetic field of the scanner that is always present once the magnet is ramped up to the designated field strength. This static magnetic field is always on. The most common breaches of MR safety occur due to an object being attracted to the static magnetic field. An individual may be struck, injured or trapped against the magnet by the object. Equipment may be damaged by slamming into the magnet or being struck by another object that is accelerating rapidly due to the strong attraction of the magnetic field.

MRI Scan Room

The CIS Scanner

The CIS scanner is a 3 Tesla system. The zone around the magnet where the field strength drops to 5 gauss or below (the 5-gauss line) is deemed to be safe for general public access and use of any non-MR compatible equipment. At the CIS, the 5-gauss line is contained within the scanner and equipment rooms as indicated in the figure below, so all other areas of the CIS MR suite are outside the 5-gauss line and thus deemed safe for access by people who have not been screened for MR safety and for use of non-MR compatible equipment. The area within the scanner room that is within the 5-gauss line is called the fringe field. The MR user entering the scanner room must be aware of the fringe field and which objects and devices are safe to move into the static magnetic field.

All personnel, including investigators, employees, and students, who work within the MR environment, must be trained and screened for personal safety prior to entering the magnetic field. To work in the magnetic environment, it is mandatory to complete Level 1 training, complete the written safety test, and participate in an annual renewal. This includes all personnel who are conducting or assisting with MR research studies, as well as the researchers who are recruiting, scheduling, and pre-screening participants for their MR sessions. Those who complete Level 2 training are considered an apprentice operator of the scanner. To independently operate the scanner, individuals must complete Level 3 training.

Any additional personnel who need to enter the magnet room (e.g., facility maintenance employees, site visitors, etc.) must be screened on a case-by-case basis.

It is expected that new personnel will complete the appropriate training prior to accessing the scanner area unescorted. All personnel will participate in an annual renewal process to maintain access to the MR environment. Failure to do so will result in a loss of privileges at the CIS.