A man has died of his injuries, after taking a concealed weapon into a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) room.
Forty-year-old lawyer Leandro Mathias de Novaes allegedly took a gun with him when accompanying his mother to an appointment at Laboratorio Cura, concealed under his waistband.
“Both the patient and [her] companion were properly instructed regarding the procedures for accessing the examination room and warned about the removal of any and all metallic objects,” Laboratorio Cura said in a statement, according to the Miami Herald.
“The firearm was not mentioned by the companion, who entered the examination room with the object by his decision.”
MRI machines work by creating powerful magnetic fields (as well as radio waves) targeting hydrogen nuclei (protons) in water. As protons are subjected to the magnetic field (about a thousand times stronger than that produced by a fridge magnet) their axes line up.
"This uniform alignment creates a magnetic vector oriented along the axis of the MRI scanner," science editor Abi Berger explains in the BMJ.
"When additional energy (in the form of a radio wave) is added to the magnetic field, the magnetic vector is deflected. The radio wave frequency [...] that causes the hydrogen nuclei to resonate is dependent on the element sought (hydrogen in this case) and the strength of the magnetic field."
"When the radiofrequency source is switched off the magnetic vector returns to its resting state, and this causes a signal (also a radio wave) to be emitted. It is this signal which is used to create the MR images."
While this is great for seeing inside the body – especially cartilage and muscles, which other scanning methods can't image as effectively – it's not so great if you happen to be carrying any loose metal or loaded firearms.
The video shows how metal is sucked towards the machines.
According to reports, the gun advocate's weapon was pulled out of his waistband by the machine, before it discharged into his stomach. de Novaes had a license to carry the weapon, but it is not clear why he didn't remove it prior to entering the machine. Before his death on February 6, the lawyer regularly posted pro-gun content to his TikTok channel, according to the New York Post.
People have been fatally sucked into MRI machines before, generally when metal oxygen tanks have been brought in with patients.