Although a mammogram is considered the standard test for breast cancer screening, another technology known as breast magnetic resonance imaging MRI is increasingly being used in women who are at increased risk. Although MRIs are capable of detecting tumors that mammograms sometimes miss, they are undermined by their high cost and an increased potential for false-positive results those that report cancer even when cancer is not present. While both can be used to detect breast cancer, mammograms and MRIs have their own distinct purposes, indications, advantages, and limitations. Neither is inherently "better" than the other. The question is more about when a test is appropriate and whether it can deliver a high degree of reliability without exposing a woman to undue procedures or costs.
MRI for Cancer
Breast Cancer information - by Moose and Doc
Women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer or who are at high risk of developing the disease will often undergo a medical imaging procedure known as magnetic resonance imaging MRI. The procedure involves an injection of a solution containing the chemical element gadolinium Gd —a silvery-white metal that has mild magnetic properties. In this capacity, gadolinium is referred to as a contrast agent. Gadolinium is the most commonly used contrast agent for MRI and the one that is used in imaging for the screening, diagnosis, or monitoring of breast cancer. Gadolinium's properties can be put to good use in MRI because the technology utilizes magnetic pulses to create highly detailed, cross-sectional images of internal organs. The gadolinium used for a breast MRI is chelated, meaning that it has been chemically bound to an amino acid so that it can be better absorbed by the body.
Breast Cancer Information: Moose and Doc
By Gene Emery. Reuters Health - Breast cancer can be difficult to detect in women with extremely dense breast tissue, but a new Dutch study indicates that getting an MRI scan can spot tumors that would otherwise be missed. Carla van Gils, referring to the tumors uncovered between screening mammograms. Dan Longo, an editor at the New England Journal of Medicine, where the new study appears, and author of an editorial accompanying the report. But Dr.
MRI scanning technology has progressed significantly in recent years. In the last decade, a newer generation of scanners has been developed which produce excellent-quality images, allowing physicians more opportunities to treat and diagnose patients in a less-invasive, highly accurate manner. Magnetic strength: the strength of the magnet is a key element to MRI scanning.