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A Day with fMRI

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What is fMRI?
MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging and it involves using a big magnet and radio waves to take pictures of your brain; we call these structural scans. If you are asked to do a certain task while in the scanner, we call this a functional scan and we refer to it as fMRI. With the MRI scanner, we are able to take pictures of the inside of your head! A special kind of scan called a DTI scan (Diffusion Tensor Imaging) creates beautiful pictures, and allows us to see the natural flow of water in your brain!
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What will you see?
This is the scanner we will be using to take pictures. The tunnel you see is called the bore, and when you lie on the soft mattress, we can slide you in so we can take your brain pictures!
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This is the ‘mock’ scanner, where you can see what it is like to be in the real scanner. You will be able to play and practice lying still while watching movies.
Preparing for your fMRI session at MIT!
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1. When you arrive, we will go into the control room and make sure that you don’t have any metal on your clothes or in your pockets using a wand that detects metal. If you have any metal, the scanner will not be able to take pictures of you.
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2. One of the people in the control room will then help you get onto the scanner bed, and will give you some soft earphones so you can hear the sounds of the videos!
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3. Just like a normal camera, we need you to be as still as possible while you are in the scanner. If not, the pictures will be blurry!
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4.Please come to the session well rested. Also, be sure you've eaten prior to coming in for the study if the study starts or ends around meal time. We will have snacks available during the study.

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