MRI scan on NHS

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danielaandrea
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I hope I've posted in the right thread but basically, its not so much that I want to get an MRI scan and I am going to ask my GP about, but I'm trying to look into whether the waiting list for MRI scans are long or not? I suffer from very severe migraines which come daily and will last for a good 2/3 days and I'm starting to think that it may be something else causing the pain, seeing as I'm doing what the doctor says and takingthe highest dosage of medication for them (I just want to put my mind at rest) I know that privately I would be looking to pay around 800 for a brain scan which is what I'm looking most into but as much I want it done 800 quid is ALOT of money!

Thanks in advance to anyone that can help. :^_^:
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LisaG1794
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I didn't have mine on the NHS because we get free health service, but I had a consultation and got the MRI the next day. But under the NHS it might be completely different, sorry if that was no help at all!!


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lizz-ie
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(Original post by danielaandrea)
I hope I've posted in the right thread but basically, its not so much that I want to get an MRI scan and I am going to ask my GP about, but I'm trying to look into whether the waiting list for MRI scans are long or not? I suffer from very severe migraines which come daily and will last for a good 2/3 days and I'm starting to think that it may be something else causing the pain, seeing as I'm doing what the doctor says and takingthe highest dosage of medication for them (I just want to put my mind at rest) I know that privately I would be looking to pay around 800 for a brain scan which is what I'm looking most into but as much I want it done 800 quid is ALOT of money!

Thanks in advance to anyone that can help. :^_^:
I had this, my GP had to refer me to a specialist, which took ages, and then the MRI was supposed to be a month after that, but there was a cancellation and so I had it the next day. Definitely ask about cancellations!

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liquid394
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(Original post by danielaandrea)
I hope I've posted in the right thread but basically, its not so much that I want to get an MRI scan and I am going to ask my GP about, but I'm trying to look into whether the waiting list for MRI scans are long or not? I suffer from very severe migraines which come daily and will last for a good 2/3 days and I'm starting to think that it may be something else causing the pain, seeing as I'm doing what the doctor says and takingthe highest dosage of medication for them (I just want to put my mind at rest) I know that privately I would be looking to pay around 800 for a brain scan which is what I'm looking most into but as much I want it done 800 quid is ALOT of money!

Thanks in advance to anyone that can help. :^_^:
This may sound daft and maybe a lot of effort, but if u live near a research facility of medicial physics which have a MRI scan u can take part in one of the tests which will use the FMRI which is designed to analyse the brain. In the same time you're helping them and they help u will give u the results/send them to your GP so he can analyse them or get a radiologist to analyse it for you. Also a lot of psycologists use it aswell for research so if u can get in contact with a student which needs test samples. I know this as I worked in one research centre where they had access to MRI for research.
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MC Tweed
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I've suffered from severe migraines from ages 14-18, and after four years of prolonged misdiagnosis from my GP, and after having had a CT and an MRI which spotted that I had a brain tumour. If I were you, I would demand asap referral to a specialist. not that I am trying to say that you're going to have one, but its better to be sure.

And by the way, MRIs are pretty claustrophobic at first, but really they're walk in the park.
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danielaandrea
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(Original post by MC Tweed)
I've suffered from severe migraines from ages 14-18, and after four years of prolonged misdiagnosis from my GP, and after having had a CT and an MRI which spotted that I had a brain tumour. If I were you, I would demand asap referral to a specialist. not that I am trying to say that you're going to have one, but its better to be sure.

And by the way, MRIs are pretty claustrophobic at first, but really they're walk in the park.

I've had them from around 13/14 too I know there's a chance I won't have one but I'd rather go through the trouble of getting one and wait months if needed. GP is really pissing me off too, I keep going back to get help and all they do is put the dosage of my prescriptions up! But will definitely be demanding a scan. Thank you!
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RollerBall
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The problem is MRIs aren't there to "put your mind at rest". They're extremely expensive and extremely sought after; even most large hospitals will only have a single MRI machine. Not only that but a lot of primary care trusts can't actually refer straight to MRI, you'll have to be referred to a neuro /w special interest in migraines who may refer you.

Unless you have any red flag symptoms which highlight it could be something other than migraines it's unlikely you'll be given one. I don't want to come across as a **** but if you have clear migraine signs what do you want them to do? What do you expect to gain out the MRI? If it's clear you're having migraines and you have no other symptoms apart from they're severe and they've gone on for years it's highly unlikely you have something else. What other differential are you considering?

If you really want one but your doctor doesn't think you require one (you know, the guy who's trained for years and probably has more experience in medicine than you have in life) then go private. The waiting list will be huge for you on the NHS if you manage to persuade your doc to give you one because you're not a priority, regardless of how severe your migraines are. At best you might get a CT out of it.

I know this is not what you want to hear but I'm trying to give you a reality check, tests like MRIs are not there to give patients piece of mind. They are expensive, difficult to come by, difficult to refer to and in constant use. They're there as tools to diagnose, not give out for no reason.
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danielaandrea
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(Original post by RollerBall)
The problem is MRIs aren't there to "put your mind at rest". They're extremely expensive and extremely sought after, most large hospitals will only have a single MRI machine. Not only that but a lot of primary care trusts can't actually refer straight to MRI, you'll have to be referred to a neuro /w special interest in migraines who may refer you.

Unless you have any red flag symptoms which highlight it could be something other than migraines it's unlikely you'll be given one. I don't want to come across as a **** but if you have clear migraine signs what do you want them to do? What do you expect to gain out the MRI? If it's clear you're having migraines and you have no other symptoms apart from they're severe and they've gone on for years it's highly unlikely you have something else. What other differential are you considering?

If you really want one but your doctor doesn't think you require one (you know, the guy who's trained for years and probably has more experience in medicine than you have in life) then go private. The waiting list will be huge for you on the NHS if you manage to persuade your doc to give you one because you're not a priority, regardless of how severe your migraines are. At best you might get a CT out of it.

I know I'm coming across as a **** but I'm trying to give you a reality check, tests like MRIs are not there to give patients piece of mind. They are expensive, difficult to come by, difficult to refer to and in constant use. They're there as tools to diagnose, not give out for no reason.

If you were experiencing the pain I experience everyday then you would want to try anything you could to find out what the hell was going on in your head. If literally nothing that is meant to treat migraines is working then there's a chance it could be something else. I'm not saying that I'm gonna go crazy at my GP if he says I don't need a scan, but its a pain I can't get rid of with the strongest of pain killers, so much I've lost a job and stay in literally all the time because I can't deal with the pain anymore. I appreciate your help but I'd rather ask to see a specialist who could refer me and at least try to get to the bottom of what is happening than just leave it when clearly nothing they're giving me is working.
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RollerBall
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(Original post by danielaandrea)
If you were experiencing the pain I experience everyday then you would want to try anything you could to find out what the hell was going on in your head. If literally nothing that is meant to treat migraines is working then there's a chance it could be something else. I'm not saying that I'm gonna go crazy at my GP if he says I don't need a scan, but its a pain I can't get rid of with the strongest of pain killers, so much I've lost a job and stay in literally all the time because I can't deal with the pain anymore. I appreciate your help but I'd rather ask to see a specialist who could refer me and at least try to get to the bottom of what is happening than just leave it when clearly nothing they're giving me is working.
If I was in your position (and I have been, albeit not with migraines) I would strive to find alternative treatments and explore other management options with a specialist rather than ask for a random diagnostic test fishing for things that in all likelihood don't exist.

Don't get me wrong, I think a referral to a specialist might be in order, just not for an MRI which may not even be warranted or indicated. Don't hang on a diagnostic test hoping for answers, it's a lose-lose. Either you don't find anything and you're back at square one or you find something even worse. It's unlikely you're going to find something that's easily treatable and responds well to medication and go back to normal, it just doesn't work like that. It sounds like this is something you need to discuss with your GP though regardless.

If you go in asking for an MRI though chances are you'll have a bad time. If you go in saying this isn't working, you're not happy, the effects it's having and what else can we do most GPs will respond much better. If they then say there's nothing they can do then bring up specialists/MRIs.
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Tiger Rag
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Have you been ask to be seen by a specialist yet? I waited about a month for both MRI scans and waited for what seemed like ages for the second set of results, which didn't show much and the first set were inconclusive.
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MC Tweed
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oh by the way, a red flag symptom that I suffered from (and now still do because it of it) is ill balance, which subsequently caused nausea. I don't know if that's one of your symptoms, but if so, that would be another telltale sign that would be cause for concern. And funnily enough, it was a specsavers eye test that referred me to my local hospital eye clinic (who gave me my first scans), who the sent me to the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford (part of the university medical school, who also have several MRI scanners). a friend of my mum's who is training to be a GP said that its drummed into them that a teenager showing them symptoms should be referred asap. To this day my GP has remained useless, so heed my advice: don't let them beat around the bush, and I'd hate someone permanently suffering due to low level medical negligence like I did.

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l.west191
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I had this same problem and I stopped the meds. I know it sounds crazy but it helped.

I have medication-overdose migraines from the migraine medication. http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/headaches...headaches.aspx

It's worth looking into
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danielaandrea
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(Original post by MC Tweed)
oh by the way, a red flag symptom that I suffered from (and now still do because it of it) is ill balance, which subsequently caused nausea. I don't know if that's one of your symptoms, but if so, that would be another telltale sign that would be cause for concern. And funnily enough, it was a specsavers eye test that referred me to my local hospital eye clinic (who gave me my first scans), who the sent me to the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford (part of the university medical school, who also have several MRI scanners). a friend of my mum's who is training to be a GP said that its drummed into them that a teenager showing them symptoms should be referred asap. To this day my GP has remained useless, so heed my advice: don't let them beat around the bush, and I'd hate someone permanently suffering due to low level medical negligence like I did.

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I do have nausea around 95% of the time, its only when I'm sleeping at night that I'm completely fine. I actually went to the opticians myself for an eye test which showed I needed glasses, which I thought would help the situation but it hasn't at all. Whatever it is I really hope its sorted sooner rather than later. Thank you for your help though! :^_^:
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danielaandrea
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(Original post by OU Student)
Have you been ask to be seen by a specialist yet? I waited about a month for both MRI scans and waited for what seemed like ages for the second set of results, which didn't show much and the first set were inconclusive.
I haven't no, I need to see my GP and all that but I was basically just wondering how long the waiting list was if I did end up getting referred, which seems unlikely now..
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mirrin 22
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I went for blood test and my AFP came back significantly high .I then had a ultrasound done , and they found a black mass . My consultant has told me that they think that it is liver cancer . And that I need a MRI scan done . How long should I have to wait .
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LD70
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I've been suffering constant dizziness and head pain that is there every day when I wake up until I go to bed, it never goes away, it's cost me my career, my social life and I'm unable to do simple things like housework or shopping; After over a year of having this constantly it's got so bad that I am suffering severe depression and have got to the point where I simply do not wish to wake up - what's the point? My doctor (you know that one that's trained for years and supposed to have more experience in medicine that we have in our own lives) doesn't know what it is..In a year I've had a blood test, my eyes looked into and my blood pressure taken and that's it! I've been fobbed me off with 'try this' or 'try that' - everything from sinusitis medication to exercises to re-balance my inner ear and all to no avail. The doctor still can't tell me what it is and I had to literally insist on more tests which would include an MRI - are you suggesting that after going through this that we shouldn't be insisting on further investigation and if so what else are we to do? They may be expensive but so is 30 plus years of paying National insurance every month because had this been he USA and those payments been medical insurance those tests would have been done months ago, I'd have a diagnosis and hopefully a treatment that means I could live a normal life - something that people making comments like yours take for granted. In my experience the GP's are so vague to the point that you leave the surgery no better off and with no further knowledge - just another prescription for something you have to 'try to see if it works' My mother died of liver cancer and could be alive today had she insisted on an MRI scan but because of all the money saving 'try this, try that' nonsense that she was fobbed off with, by the time she got her scan the tumor was too big and the cancer had spread. I have paid THOUSANDS into the NHS system as have many so how dare you suggest that when it comes to our personal health and possibly our life that we should not be insisting on using the facilities that we have paid for ourselves to get everything checked out properly instead of this ridiculous money saving guessing game that the GP's do so frequently now - it never used to be like that so why is it now?
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LadyMcCartney4
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(Original post by LD70)
I've been suffering constant dizziness and head pain that is there every day when I wake up until I go to bed, it never goes away, it's cost me my career, my social life and I'm unable to do simple things like housework or shopping; After over a year of having this constantly it's got so bad that I am suffering severe depression and have got to the point where I simply do not wish to wake up - what's the point? My doctor (you know that one that's trained for years and supposed to have more experience in medicine that we have in our own lives) doesn't know what it is..In a year I've had a blood test, my eyes looked into and my blood pressure taken and that's it! I've been fobbed me off with 'try this' or 'try that' - everything from sinusitis medication to exercises to re-balance my inner ear and all to no avail. The doctor still can't tell me what it is and I had to literally insist on more tests which would include an MRI - are you suggesting that after going through this that we shouldn't be insisting on further investigation and if so what else are we to do? They may be expensive but so is 30 plus years of paying National insurance every month because had this been he USA and those payments been medical insurance those tests would have been done months ago, I'd have a diagnosis and hopefully a treatment that means I could live a normal life - something that people making comments like yours take for granted. In my experience the GP's are so vague to the point that you leave the surgery no better off and with no further knowledge - just another prescription for something you have to 'try to see if it works' My mother died of liver cancer and could be alive today had she insisted on an MRI scan but because of all the money saving 'try this, try that' nonsense that she was fobbed off with, by the time she got her scan the tumor was too big and the cancer had spread. I have paid THOUSANDS into the NHS system as have many so how dare you suggest that when it comes to our personal health and possibly our life that we should not be insisting on using the facilities that we have paid for ourselves to get everything checked out properly instead of this ridiculous money saving guessing game that the GP's do so frequently now - it never used to be like that so why is it now?
I completely agree, doctors often base their diagnosis on trial and error and will give you a hundred different medications to try before they even contemplate doing any kind of test. I have no trust in NHS doctors anymore, it seems like they have a budget per patient and their only preoccupation is in saving money, but those of us who can't afford private insurance have to put our lives in their hands.
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