Whee! New UCSF rooms let kids imagine they’re riding a cable car


Getting an MRI, which scans the body to help detect medical problems or diseases, can be a claustrophobic experience. Or as friend of Muni Diaries Erich puts it “it’s like getting stuffed inside a toilet paper tube”—with thumps.

To make the experience more pleasant—for kids in particular—the new UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay has created MRI suites with different Bay Area themes that feature murals, music, sound effects, and even images projected on the inside of the machine. Our favorite, for obvious reasons, simulates a cable car ride, letting kids imagine they are zipping down a big hill.

Making kids feel more comfortable can eliminate the need for sedation or anesthesia, according to a UCSF article that explains more about the MRI suites.

Pretty cool, we think, but it does beg the question: Who’d have ever thought public transit could calm somebody down?


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