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Keywords:

  • anxiety;
  • magnetic resonance imaging;
  • sedation;
  • systematic review

Abstract

Purpose

Adults undergoing MRI scans can experience anxiety, claustrophobia and fear during the scanning experience and, in some cases, require sedation. The aim of this systematic review was to determine what strategies are effective in reducing fear, anxiety and claustrophobia, and the need for sedation in adults undergoing MRI.

Methods

A quantitative systematic review, according to the methodology of the Joanna Briggs Institute, was carried out. A systematic search of a number of databases was performed. Studies were then screened and critically appraised by two independent reviewers before being included in the review.

Results

In total, 21 studies met the inclusion criteria for the review, which assessed the following interventions: MRI design features, cognitive–behavioural strategies, prone positioning, information, fragrance administration and team training. All of these had some positive impact on outcomes.

Conclusion

Healthcare professionals working with adults undergoing MRI may consider some of the strategies included in this review to implement in their practice to reduce anxiety and increase patient comfort while reducing the need for sedation.