GEOFF TOMPKINSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GEOFF TOMPKINSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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MRI brain scanning. Woman patient lies with her head in the circular detector of an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scanner during brain scanning. Her head is secured in a frame; she is assisted by a radiographer. In the foreground is the control room from which the scan has been digitised onto computer. MRI scanners produce "slice" images through the body. The device employs a cylindrical magnet producing a powerful magnetic field. Radio wave pulses emitted by the scanner interact with atoms in the body affected by the magnetic field, and radio signals rebounding are picked up by the detector. MRI is useful for studying tumours in soft tissues like the brain and spinal cord.
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