Screening Breast MRI



Routine breast cancer screening is important for all women, but even more so for those at higher risk. If you are at higher risk of breast cancer, you may need to be screened earlier and more often than women at average risk.


A woman is considered at higher risk if she has one factor that greatly increases risk or several factors that together, greatly increase risk. Your health care provider may use different tools to assess your risk and help you make a personalized breast cancer screening plan.



At this time, Breast MRI is mostly used in breast cancer diagnosis and staging, rather than in screening. However, there is growing evidence that breast MRI in combination with mammography is better than mammography alone at finding breast cancer in certain women at higher risk. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network recommends screening with mammography plus breast MRI for some women at higher risk of breast cancer, including
those with:

• a BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation
• a first-degree relative with a BRCA1/2 mutation, but personally have not been tested for BRCA1/2 mutations
• Radiation treatment to the chest area before age 30
• Li-Fraumeni, Cowden or Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndrome (or a TP53 or PTEN gene mutation)
• an AT M, CHEK2 or PALB2 gene mutation
• a greater than 20% lifetime risk of invasive breast
• cancer based mainly on family history


If you have any of the risk factors referenced—talk with your provider about breast cancer screening with the Breast MRI.