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MRI Machine Weight Limits

Nov 5, 2020 | Articles, MRI

MRI imaging is an advanced tool that is found in practically every healthcare institution. With the ability to detect various ailments and abnormalities thanks to the cutting-edge MRI parts and technologies, it has become an essential tool of modern medicine. Without the need to blindly open up the human body, treating anything that looks strange via computer imaging is quicker.

The issue now is that MRI machines are typically built to be a specific size. Therefore, these medical technologies will only fit a particular size of humans to work correctly. With the incidence of obesity in America, this poses issues and challenges in imaging larger patients using MRIs. 

mri machine weight limit

The Challenges In Modern Diagnostic Imaging

One plight that many doctors and radiologists face is that obese patients are increasing annually due to poor dieting and a stagnant lifestyle. In fact, 13 American states have an adult population that is 60 percent obese, with the percentage of total American adults predicted to be at 44 percent in the coming decades. 

It is also common that obese patients typically face more ailments and illnesses due to poor health choices, making the requirement for diagnostic tech even higher. MRI machines are one of the most critical technologies in any human body imaging done, and not being able to put a person on a machine can cause fatalities. 


MRI Machine Limits

Machines typically have a weight limit of 300 pounds for the standard variants. Some hospitals in America went through extra expenditures to accommodate larger patients, as they required larger machines. The weight issue has caused specific patients to be unable to proceed with an MRI scan procedure, birthing the subsequent problem of injuries due to patient transfer. 

Some existing MRI units can support heavier weight limits due to their open nature, while CT machines are typically larger variants. When a patient cannot fit into the CT machine, they are then subjected to an ultrasound instead, which can be inaccurate because of the increased tissues in obese people. 


If a patient is too large to fit into any diagnostic imaging machine, the end results are in empirical treatment, which can be difficult due to its dangers. In general, computer imaging is extremely accurate and has saved plenty of lives and precious time. Without it, medical procedures become extremely difficult. 


Challenges In Manufacturing

As obesity continues to rise, it is difficult for healthcare centers to choose machine types, as larger machines will take up more space. The market for scanning obese patients might not be as cost-effective as regular variants of the MRI. Additionally, newer MRI models mean that producing MRI parts must be simultaneous for anything that breaks or goes wrong. An example is in, say, a GE MRI MR750 3T. Parts that fit that machine will likely be different in size and shape for a newer variant that is larger to accommodate obese patients. 

Too many machines can be a logistical nightmare for hospitals, especially for repairs and maintenance. New technologies introduced often have a learning curve for some, causing hiccups in medical procedures. Creating a new MRI model is not as easy as scaling up parts to fit a larger individual, as there are plenty of technical details that play into how these work. 



With the pressing issue of obesity in America, this has posed problems for MRI manufacturers and hospitals due to the inability to use traditionally-sized machines for individual patients. Considering the nature of change in America’s obese population, the medical industry has to start making adjustments towards treating and diagnosing people of this demographic. 

DirectMed Parts is the premium distributor of MRI parts in the United States. Keep your diagnostic tools in great shape to ensure the best accuracy of imaging procedures. Contact us to find out more about DirectMed parts and services!


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