High-Resolution Dynamic* Breast MRI Current Capabilities of syngo MR MAGNETOM Systems
Helmuth Schultze-Haakh, Ph.D.
MR R&D Collaborations Manager, Siemens Medical Solutions Inc., USA | 02.06.2006
A number of recent journal publications show that MR imaging is increasingly used for breast lesion visualization and breast cancer management. To increase the specificity of breast MR, dynamic exams have become an integral part of standard breast MR examinations. During a dynamic* examination both breasts are imaged multiple times over approximately five minutes as the bolus of contrast* material passes through the breast tissues. Malignant lesions enhance more abruptly and more intensely than normal structures and are thus detected by this exam. Benign lesions can be differentiated from malignant lesions using a combination of morphology and dynamic contrast enhancement characteristics.
MR is acknowledged to be very sensitive, and, as experience levels rise and more sophisticated post-processing tools become available, the accuracy of breast MR is improving as well. It is increasingly evident that breast evaluation for known or suspected cancer lesions should also include the contra-lateral breast to detect subtle, often clinically occult contra-lateral tumors.
Ideally, this exam would not only visualize and evaluate lesions in the breasts, but also detect abnormal lymph nodes in the axillae and surrounding chest. This information can be used to stage the disease process and for treatment decisions.