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Which is better CT or MRI?
Apr 4, 2003

I have been reading your Q&A and find it very informative. All of this talk about CT vs. MRI has me confused, though. After a lymph node biopsy, myself, the Dr. sent me for a MRI (with something in an IV), to make sure the nodes in my neck, mediastinum, and axilla were normal sized. He said the CT costs a little less, but the MRI gives him better detail and made size determination for these particular areas easier. What do you think of this? I saw you said the MRI is a good scan, but is the MRI as good or better than CT at determining the extent of lymphadenopathy for these particular sites? Or at least would you feel comfortable with its ability to pick up abnormalities in these areas?

Response from Dr. Dezube

I'm not sure that I can add more to my original answer. CT scans and MRI scans are both excellent scans. I tend to order MRI scans when I want to image brains, spines, and knees; and CT scans when I want to look at the chest, abdomen, and pelvis. However, this is just a preference and different doctors and different institutions will have different preferences. I should add the many patients find MRIs harder to tolerate than CT scans, since MRI scans often involve more noise (the magnet is noisy) and more feelings of claustrophobia (you are inserted into the hole/tunnel inside a magnet. In your case, I just don't think it matters much whether you get a CT scan or an MRI scan.


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