What You Need to Know Before Breast MRI
Although breast cancer mostly occurs among women older than 50, it can affect those under 45 as well. So, annual breast check-up is crucial. Breast MRI is one of the procedures for breast cancer screening. It can be used for high-risk patients. Here’s what you need to know about Breast MRI.
What is Breast MRI?
Breast MRI or Breast Magnetic Resonance Imaging is a breast cancer screening procedure using electromagnetic field to create detailed pictures of the inside of the breast, to diagnose breast cancer effectively in asymptomatic women who have high risk.
Who Needs Breast MRI?
- Women with direct relatives – such as mother, sister, and/or daughter – who have breast or ovarian cancer.
- Women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes.
- Women who have had radiation treatment to the chest between the ages of 10 and 30.
- Women whose breast biopsy indicated abnormal cells such as Atypical Ductal Hyperplasia (ADH), Lobular Carcinoma in situ (LCIS).
- Women who have previously been treated for breast cancer.
- Women who have dense breast tissue from mammography.
How Breast MRI Works?
- Preoperative evaluation of patients whose cancer has spread to the lymph nodes or other organs which may have been caused by occult breast cancer.
- To further clarify the evaluation of abnormalities that have been inconclusive from mammographic or ultrasound findings.
- To examine breast implant integrity and assess its irregularities that cannot be detected by mammogram or ultrasound in women who have a history of silicone or cosmetic injections.
- To evaluate treatment response after neoadjuvant chemotherapy.
- MRI-guided biopsy to find an area with abnormality in the breast.
The Advantages of Breast MRI
- No radiation exposure during the procedure.
- Improve accuracy for diagnosis.
The Disadvantages of MRI Breast
- Not suitable for patients who are claustrophobic or cannot lie comfortably face down for a long time.
- Patients who have metal implant cannot pass through MRI.
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women must be screened under doctor’s supervision.