Breast MRI: An Effective Diagnostic Tool for Women at High Risk of Getting Breast Cancer

​​​Women who have a 20% lifetime risk (or greater) of getting breast cancer are sometimes recommended to get a breast MRI along with a screening mammogram, according to The Center for Diagnostic Imaging. MRIs are conducted to measure the size and extent of breast cancer in order to follow the right treatment.

Breast MRIs in Miami should not be used in place of a breast biopsy to help differentiate between benign and malignant tumors. MRIs are able to detect tumors in dense breast tissue, but having dense breasts should not necessitate a breast MRI scan. There are tiny calcifications that account for half of breast cancers, and these are usually detected through mammography.

An Insight into Breast MRI

Breast MRIs are just like diagnostic mammograms, in that they require specially designed equipment. For a patient that is planning for an MRI screening, they should go to a facility that has dedicated equipment that can perform an MRI-guided breast biopsy.

Instead of radiation, MRI uses a magnetic field to generate cross-sectional images of the body. An MRI takes pictures of a patient's breasts from different angles: the side, the front and above the head. Therefore, it is able to take images of the soft tissues which are sometimes difficult to detect with other imaging tests.

How to prepare for the test?

Patients need to follow certain instructions given by their doctor before undergoing a scan. Patients are not supposed to follow any specific dietary plan before an MRI, however, there are certain things patients should be made aware of before the exam:

1. An MRI can be experienced as confining for some people, so if they tend to experience claustrophobia, they may need to take a sedative before their MRI as it will help them relax while they are placed in a scanner. Another strategy is to talk with a patient counselor or a lab attendant before the procedure.

2. In some MRI centers in Miami, the test is conducted in an open space that gives more room around the body so patients are more at ease. For those that would prefer this arrangement, it is important to see if this alternative can be accommodated.

3. All metallic objects must be removed prior to the exam, as they can interfere with the magnets in the machine.

About CDI: The Center for Diagnostic Imaging is one of Miami's leading diagnostic facilities. CDI has locations in Aventura, North Miami Beach, and South Dade. As a premier imaging center in Miami, CDI offers CT scans in Miamimammograms in Miami, and MRIs in Miami Beach.

For more information on or to set up an appointment with The Center for Diagnostic Imaging, call 1-800-371-0002. 

Source: The Center for Diagnostic Imaging