The Cost Of An MRI Without Insurance In The US

You have been looking for the price of an MRI without insurance. You may have looked on google, but your search must have been fruitless because you are still not getting the most accurate information about the price of an MRI without insurance.

If you are planning to get a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan, you will surely want to know the price of an MRI without insurance. An MRI without insurance costs anywhere between $375 to $2,850. This will depend on where you live and how far deep the doctor plans on scanning.

The cost of an MRI without a private health care plan range from seventy-three to four hundred dollars per session, depending on your health care plan.

The Cost Of An MRI Without Insurance In The US

MRI stands for magnetic resonance imaging and is a non-invasive medical procedure that produces pictures of the body’s internal structures. MRI uses magnetic fields, radio waves and a computer to produce detailed images of organs, soft tissues and bone. MRI is more detailed than standard X-rays or CT scans, which use radiation instead of magnets.

MRI machines are large cylindrical devices that contain a huge magnet, which generates a strong magnetic field around the area being scanned. The patient lies inside this magnet, which allows protons in their body to align with it.

A scanner then takes pictures of these aligned protons as they emit radio waves when they are disturbed by an external magnetic field. These radio waves are translated into an image by computer software.

MRI uses strong magnets to create images based on how hydrogen atoms behave under certain conditions. Because hydrogen is the most common element in human tissue and water, MRI can provide detailed information about organs and soft tissues such as muscles, nerves and fat cells.

In summary, the MRI machine is a large, doughnut-shaped magnet. You’ll be asked to lie down on your back when you step into the machine. A clear protective shield will be placed over your body.

Then the MRI scanner will take a series of images of your brain and spinal cord. These images create pictures of the structure, function and anatomy of your brain and spinal cord.

What Happens During An MRI Scan?

You may hear clicking and buzzing sounds as you’re inside the scanner. These are normal and come from the parts of the scanner that move when it takes pictures.

The noise can be loud at times, but you’ll be given earplugs to wear while in the scanner. You may also feel some pressure on your body as it’s moved into position by magnetic forces inside the machine.

The Cost Of An MRI Without Insurance In The US

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) costs from $375 to $2,850 in the United States, with a national average of $1,325. The average costs in comparison to national averages and the overall target fair price are shown below.

  • National Average: $1,325
  • National Range: $375-$2,850
  • Target Fair Price: $750

The Cost of an MRI by City

Below is a breakdown of the typical range of an endoscopy procedure by city within the United States

LocationCost without insurance
Atlanta, GA$550 – $1,400
Chicago, IL$575 – $1,500
Dallas, TX$500 – $1,300
Houston, TX$525 – $1,400
Miami, FL$550 – $1,450
Los Angeles, CA$460 – $1,200
Philadelphia, PA$575 – $1,500
New York, NY$625 – $1,600
Washington, DC$550 – $1,400
Phoenix, AZ$525 – $1,350

The National Average of the Cost of an MRI by Procedure

The cost of an MRI varies by city and where the MRI is taking place on the body. Below is a comparison of the national averages of MRI by the procedure. 

ProcedurePrice Range
General MRI$400 – $5,700
Brain MRI$1,600 – $8,400
Neck MRI$500 – $11,800
Chest MRI$500 – $7,900
Breast MRI$500 – $10,300
Abdominal MRI$1,600 – $7,600
Cervical Spine MRI$1,400 – $7,600
Pelvic MRI$500 – $7,900
Upper Extremity MRI (shoulder, arm, wrist, hand)$1,050 – $7,000
Lower Extremity MRI (foot, ankle, leg, hip)$975 – $6,300
Head MRI$410 – $6,100
Cardiac MRI$430 – $6,500
Bone MRI$410 – $2,100

Factors That Affects The Cost Of Getting An MRI Scan

As you may already know, the cost of an MRI scan varies depending on a number of factors. Some of these factors include:

  • Location

The location where you get your MRI scan done can greatly impact its cost. For example, the scan will likely be cheaper if you live in a rural area than if you had gotten it done in a big city. This is simply because fewer hospitals and clinics exist in these areas, and competition drives prices down.

  • Insurance Coverage

If you have insurance coverage for your health care costs, then getting an MRI scan at some point may be covered by your insurer. For example, Medicare and Medicaid tend to cover many medical services, including MRIs.

However, this does not mean that all insurers are created equal – some only provide basic coverage. In contrast, others offer more comprehensive services such as dental or vision care as well as medical insurance plans.

If your employer offers an employer-sponsored health plan or you are self-employed, these plans may also cover certain medical expenses, including MRIs. However, this doesn’t mean that they will cover everything, so check with your provider before assuming that they will cover any particular service.

  • The Size Of Your Facility

If you go to a small hospital or clinic, then chances are that they’ll be able to offer a lower price than larger facilities. For example, suppose you’re getting an MRI done at a hospital that has other services such as surgery or emergency care.

In that case, they may be able to afford more expensive equipment and charge higher prices because they can use the money from those other services to subsidize the cost of your MRI scan.

On the other hand, if you’re getting an MRI done in a small clinic that specializes only in MRIs, then they probably don’t have as many options for raising revenue, so they might charge less than a hospital would charge for the same procedure.

  • The Type Of Machine Used For Your Scan.

Different machines have different capabilities and some are more expensive than others. For example, open scanners (ones where you’re lying on your back) tend to be cheaper because they don’t require as much maintenance as closed scanners (where you’re lying on your stomach).

  • Degree of urgency

The second factor is whether you need an MRI scan urgently or not. Urgent scans tend to cost more than non-urgent ones because they require extra staff, who are paid overtime rates by the government.


Numerous factors affect the cost of getting an MRI scan. One of the biggest factors is the insurance company and their rates. The rates are calculated based on your specific coverage and the location of the facility that you go to.

They also take into account your medical history, past claims and deductibles, and any other medical service you may have used in the past. If you have not met your deductible, then you most likely have to pay less.

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