This Is Why You Shouldn't Bring a Gun Into an MRI

Patient, 57, ended up shot in the butt after sneaking a firearm into the machine
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 7, 2023 9:55 AM CST
Woman Shot in Butt in 'Adverse Event' in MRI Machine
Don't bring a gun in here.   (Getty Images/PhonlamaiPhoto)

It might seem obvious to most that one probably shouldn't bring a firearm into a large machine with a powerful magnetic field, but one woman learned that lesson the hard way. The Messenger first reported on the "adverse event" cited by the Food and Drug Administration, in which a 57-year-old female patient who needed an MRI was shot in the butt after sneaking her gun into the machine. The FDA report notes that before getting her scan on June 28, the woman "had undergone a standard screening procedure for ferrous objects" (ie, objects containing metals that could be drawn into the MRI's magnetic field) and answered in the negative to all screening questions, including whether she had a weapon on her.

What came next is not necessarily surprising: Once the woman entered the MRI machine and it was turned on, "the handgun was attracted to the magnet and fired a single round." The bullet pierced the woman's right buttock, though the FDA report says her entry and exit wounds were "very small and superficial" and that she seemed to go on to heal. Gizmodo, which notes it's not clear whether the patient had a permit for her firearm, details some other incidents in which people have been seriously injured or even killed near an MRI machine, thanks to nearby wheelchairs, oxygen tanks, and "even metallic butt plugs." It's not the first time there's been an MRI-linked gun discharge: A man in Brazil died earlier this year after not mentioning he had a gun on him while helping his mother at an MRI appointment. (More strange stuff stories.)

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