How to prepare for MRI imaging

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is often the best method for diagnostic purposes. It is especially well suited for the examination of the head, spine and lumbar spine, bones and joints as well as blood vessels. MRI scanners generate no harmful radiation, and the examination is painless and safe. If you arrive to the examination with private specialist referral, you are entitled to Kela reimburcement. When you come to the examination please be prepared to identify yourself with photo ID.

What to do before MRI

  • If possible, print out and fill the health history form before magnetic resonance imaging.
  • You may not eat for three hours before the MR imaging of the abdomen and pelvis.
  • You may take your regular medication as usual before magnetic resonance imaging.
  • Do not apply any transdermal patches.
  • In MR imaging of the head, avoid using lots of makeup.
  • To receive a Kela reimburcement from the MRI examination, you must have the original specialists referral and Kela card with you when you arrive to the MRI.


  1. Arrive 15 minutes before your appointment.
  2. A nurse will check your health history form and explain the examination before the MRI scan.
  3. Remove any jewellery and piercing jewellery before the examination.

Restrictions concerning the examination

A couple of reasons may prevent an MRI scan. A pacemaker, for example, prevents the examination. As a patient, you do not need to know the restrictions in detail in advance, because we will discuss them with you before the imaging examination.

If your body contains any metals which you have not reported when booking the appointment, please contact SYNLAB’s customer service. For safety reasons, it is important to make sure that SYNLAB has adequate information about the metal. You do not need to contact us if the metal is one of the following:

  • joint prosthesis
  • dental filling, dental prosthesis or retainer
  • bone support rod, nail or screw
  • tattoo
  • the foreign body or implant consists of
    • gold
    • titanium
    • aluminium
    • lead

Our MRI scanners have a weight limit. We therefore cannot perform MR scans of persons weighing more than 159 kg. The MRI scanners tube is 60cm wide.

Cancelling an MRI scan

If you are unable to come, you may cancel your appointment by calling the appointment number 010 326 3260 or in your online Health Folder. You cannot cancel an appointment by e-mail.

We charge EUR 100 of no shows or appointments cancelled less than 24 hours before the examination.