Objective: Voluntary patient motion is a common cause of image degradation during MRI and leads to repeated scanning, decreasing efficiency, and increasing costs. We hypothesized that providing an educational pamphlet to patients before their MRI examination could improve image quality and decrease the number of repeated sequences needed because of motion artifacts.
Subjects and methods: Over 12 months, we recruited patients undergoing MRI for any neurologic condition. The control group received a routine safety questionnaire concerning MRI scanning. The intervention group was given an additional pamphlet describing the examination and graphically emphasizing the value of remaining still during scanning; comprehension was confirmed by questionnaire. The radiology technologists performing the examinations were blinded to group assignments; they recorded the number of repeated sequences needed because of motion artifacts and assessed image quality on a scale of 0 to 4 (0 = unusable, 4 = perfect).
Results: The number of patients requiring repeated MRI sequences (control group vs intervention group: 40 vs 20, respectively; p = 0.009) and the total number of repeated MRI sequences (52 vs 27, p = 0.004) decreased in the group who read the pamphlet compared with the control group.
Conclusion: Providing a simple educational pamphlet to patients before their MRI examinations that illustrated motion degradation and emphasized the need to remain still significantly reduced the number of repeated sequences deemed necessary by the MRI technologist.