written by

Cynthia R. Dickerson

Cynthia R. Dickerson is a VP, Customer Experience & Marketing in Denver, CO

April 30, 2019

Study: Holding breath at end of exhale may lead to clearer MRI results

Deep breathe in. Deep breathe out. Inhale. Now hold.

No, it’s not a yoga class. It’s what you’ll hear if you undergo an MRI.

If you’ve never had an MRI, this non-invasive imaging procedure requires the patient to stay incredibly still for the machine to work effectively. Typically, MRI techs have instructed patients to hold their breath at the end of an inhale.

However, a recent study by researchers at Stanford found that having patients hold their breath at the end of the exhale reduced respiratory motion artifacts on liver MRI.
The researchers compared both techniques and published their findings in The American Journal of Roentgenology published the study online March 5, 2019. You can read the full study here.

More effective results with less visual noise on MRIs is likely to improve the accuracy of MRI result reading, and lead to more effective treatment.