The “I Love MRI sets” are no longer produced by Amazings - this activity was taken over by

The story behind the set

I have always been fascinated by LEGO®. There is something soothing about raking the pile with your hands, trying to find the perfect piece to complete your next build. It was with this mindset that I was helping my son, Yoni, build one of his projects (clearly there is no pleasure in this for me ;)). As we were working with the LEGO pieces, I came across a curved semicircular piece and realized that it reminded me of the bore opening of an MRI. With that thought in my head, my son and I began to build our initial LEGO MRI model. After building it, I realized that this might actually be useful for our child life division at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, spearheaded by Susan Frank and Meghan Kelly, to use when prepping patients for MRI. While many simulators exist on the market, some large and some small, none are built with the basic blocks of childhood. Additionally, its small size and portability allows it to be carried around the hospital in a regular work bag.  

After hearing positive comments from our child life department and realizing this may be useful on a national or even international scale, we decided to try to gain support on the LEGO ideas website. Our original model was well received, but after reading some posts on LEGO ideas from supporters, my son and I built a more detailed model.

We then reached out to fellow radiologists in an attempt to harness the power of social media. Fortunately, Dr. Geraldine McGinty, Chair of the ACR Commission on Economics, agreed to post it on her Twitter feed. There it was noticed by Dr. Erik Ranschaert, a radiologist in the Netherlands, who was similarly taken with the idea. Using fierce determination, Erik was able to communicate with Dirk Denoyelle. Erik and Dirk refined the concept using their wits and experience to the new improved version which you now have.

Erik has also succeeded in engaging his hospital’s play therapists and pediatricians, who are excited to realize this project’s potential. Erik’s hospital, Jeroen Bosch Hospital in Den Bosch, the Netherlands, has ‘put their money where their mouth is’ and provided startup funds for our initial product run.  

In a nice example of ‘many hands make light work,’ the combined efforts of Erik, Geraldine, Dirk, my son Yoni, and myself, we are now moving forward with the project on two different levels. 

We hope to distribute full size MRI simulation sets to children's hospitals across the world. Eventually we hope this kit, along with other elements, will be made available by children’s hospitals everywhere. Additionally, we will make available small MRI units consisting of just the magnet itself for those interested in a less expensive alternative. 

Some centers may even consider obtaining this smaller kit as a pre-visit gift for children preparing for their first MRI. Additionally, with time this can be complimented by other facets we hope to create, including a LEGO themed video about undergoing MRI and eventually a smartphone application which will allow patients to download and listen to audio recordings of entire MRI study sequences to help prepare for the loud and unusual noises which often scare children.

We hope to partner with other sitesinstitutions internationally to provide data on the efficacy of the LEGO MRI.

Fortuitously, this year the International Day of Radiology is centered on pediatric radiology, which provides a great opportunity for us to publicize this project and invite others to join us. We are delighted to be a part of the effort to publicize the value of radiology and creative approaches to optimizing children’s experience in radiology.

It is our hope that this portable stimulator and our additive programmesproject will enable younger children to feel less anxious about the prospect of having an MRI, as well as allow them to complete the study without the need for anesthesia.

Talk about a block party! For comments about this project, feel free to contact us at

For Kids: MRI what is it?

What is an MRI?

MRI is a large tunnel, like a long donut, which is actually a camera with a tunnel going through the middle that takes pictures of the inside of your body.

Why it's important to have one? How do I do it?

The doctors want to figure out what is hurting you. To do this they want to take some pictures of the inside of your body. You don’t need to smile, but you have to listen to instructions and try to stay really still. The camera will come close to you but won’t touch you.

What happens when I have an MRI?

There’s a great video about this on youtube:

But basically this is what happens:

You will be lying on a bed which slides through into the big tunnel.
You may get some medicine that will help you lay still during the procedure.
The MRI camera makes loud noises when it takes pictures, like very loud hums, knocks, beeps, and clicks samples of the noises can be found here 

The MRI technologist will provide ear plugs or headphones that can help decrease the noise. Some sites may have headphones to allow you to listen to your own music.

Special water may also be given through an IV to enhance the pictures.
The radiology technologist taking the pictures will be able to see you and talk to you during the procedure.

Other things about having an MRI

Sometimes a parent can stay with you during the MRI. 
You can bring a blanket or a soft toy with no metal parts to hold during the MRI.
Close your eyes and use your imagination: think about your favorite place to be, it will be over before you know it.

Adapted with permission from original by Phoenix Children’s Hospital  ​​​​​​​

For Parents

Who Performs MRI?

The MRI test is performed by a specially trained MRI technologist, with continuous assistance from a pediatric MRI radiologist. The input of all these personnel is essential for achieving the most complete study, and explains why testing times are limited.

Interpreting Results

The study will be interpreted in detail by a pediatric MRI radiologist. The final report will be available to your child's pediatrician within a few days.


As long as they can remain still and breathe comfortably, children can generally tolerate an MRI scan by simply watching a movie (on specially equipped goggles) or listening to music. Anesthesia is usually only needed for children less than 6 years of age (depending on the maturity level of the child).

When general anesthesia is required, an anesthesiologist administers the sedation.

Please make sure the pre-procedure personnel are aware of all devices inside your child’s body.
Any removable metal on the patient or clothes should be removed. If your child has had numerous metal devices placed, in his / her body, artifacts from the devices may obscure useful pictures of the body. 

Depending on your child's reason for the exam, an IV may be required for the MRI. ​​​​​​​

The MRI machine is a large magnet that is in the shape of a tunnel. Whatever body part that is being scanned needs to be in the center of the tunnel.

While your child is lying on a table in the middle of the tunnel, nothing will touch or hurt him/her as the pictures are being taken. When we start to take the pictures, loud knocking or banging noises will be heard. Whenever your child hears the loud noise, the machine is taking pictures; this is when he/she will need to hold perfectly still. To protect the child's hearing, earplugs or special headphones will be given to listen to music or a video.

The entire MRI study can be as short as 30 minutes, but sometimes can last for up to two hours. Your child has to hold perfectly still (like a statue) while pictures are being taken. Several series of pictures will be taken. Each series will last between 30 seconds to seven minutes each. The technologist will talk to your child between each set of pictures to ensure that he/she is OK.

Parents are welcome to accompany their children into the scan room, as long as you are not pregnant and all jewelry and metal are removed. Parents can be given earplugs during the scan.​​​​​​​

When the MRI pictures are complete, your child will lie on the table a few moments longer while a radiologist checks to make sure there are enough pictures. Sometimes a set of pictures will need to be repeated (this takes five to 10 minutes).

Once the doctor checks the pictures and confirms that the scan is complete, the IV will be removed and the patient and family may leave.

Adapted from


There are two MRI sets with LEGO bricks available, meant for hospitals and medical professionals.
The large set, including an MRI machine and the complete MRI setting (control room, changing room, waiting area) is meant for educational purposes, to make children feel more comfortable when having to undergo an MRI scan. This set is sold out.

The small set, only including an MRI scanner and a patient, is meant as a give-away for patients.

The sets may not be resold. They are produced in very limited quantities by Blokbricks in The Netherlands, and available via these links:

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