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» MRI Safety

Exposures, limits, safe systems of work. This section explores safety issues in magnetic resonance imaging.

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MRI Safety Guidelines

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What current MRI safety guidelines are available? (UK relevant)

The following documents may be freely downloaded unless specified otherwise:

Where to start? In the UK there are currently no exposure limits relevant to MRI set in law.* The Health and Safety Executive in the UK will therefore refer to the national HPA-RPD (was NRPB) and international ICNIRP guidelines when assessing compliance with legislation, and so these documents are most important.

  • Patient / volunteer exposure limits: see HPA-RPD 1991.
  • Staff and public exposure limits: see HPA-RPD 2004, which aligns to ICNRIP 1998 recommendations regarding public EMF exposure, thus rendering NRPB 1993 obselete.

The MHRA document does not set exposure limits but intends to draw the attention of users to the guidelines for restictions published in the UK by the HPA-RPD and internationally by the IEC and ICNIRP. The MHRA document is an excellent summary, and easy to read. Additionally, it contains HPA-RPD 1991 patient limits which is useful because the HPA-RPD 1991 document is not available for download. The IEC document contains information more relevant to manufacturers.

*Note a new European Union directive which would affect staff exposure limits, which was due for incorporation into UK law in 2008, has been delayed for a number of years pending review.

Some other relevant documents are:

This page last updated 2008/03/20.

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