A questionnaire-based descriptive pilot study was conducted among all nurses routinely working with MRI in the Northern part of Sweden to provide an indication of the self-reported prevalence of health complaints related to working with MRI systems. Fifty-nine nurses (88% response rate), with on average 8 (±6) years experience with MRI scanning procedures, returned the questionnaire. In total, 9 nurses (15%) reported regularly experiencing at least one of the health complaints (1-5% for specific health complaints) attributed to arise or be aggravated by their presence in the MRI scanning room. Stratification of the results indicated that reporting of adverse symptoms was not related to the level of occupational workload/stress. However, reporting of health complaints was related to the strength of the magnet(s) the nurses worked with, with 57% of symptoms reported by those nurses working with the strongest systems (both 1.5 and 3T scanners in this population). Although this descriptive study did not include a control population and was based on self-reporting of health complaints, these data indicate that the prevalence of reported health complaints is not related to perceived work load or occupational stress, but does confirm data from other occupational sectors and indicates that the prevalence of adverse health complaints increases with the strength of the MRI system for nurses as well.
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