Bottom line: MRI permissible if all conditions are met

Cochlear Implant – MR Conditional

Safety:  Conditional

Risks:  Thermal, Displacement, Device Malfunction


  • Static magnetic field strength up to and including 1.5T.
  • All external removable components must be removed. Note that the patient will not be able to hear.
  • Wrap the head using an Ace bandage type wrap (NO metal clips) and splint using a credit card-sized piece of plastic or thin cardboard. Do NOT use a credit or other type or card that contains a magnetic strip or chip.


  • In general, Cochlear Implants are NOT safe for MRI, unless specifically approved as MR conditional.
  • Warn the patient that he or she will feel pulling or pressure, but if there is any pain, heating or burning, the patient should alert the tech immediately.
  • While unlikely, it is possible that the MRI could cause the implanted magnet to move and this could require surgery to correct.
  • After the scan, interview the patient to make sure all is OK and document this in a note in PACS or Epic.

See also:

Bottom Line: MRI Permissible if all conditions are met