Screening and Diagnostic Breast MRI

At Wheaton Iowa, breast MRI can be used for a variety of reasons:

  • Screening in women at high risk for breast cancer
  • Assisting in guided breast biopsies
  • Determining the extent of cancer after a new diagnosis of breast cancer
  • Further evaluating hard-to-assess abnormalities seen on mammography
  • Evaluating lumpectomy sites in the years following breast cancer treatment

According to RadiologyInfo.org, additional benefits of breast MRI include:

  • MRI is a noninvasive imaging technique that does not involve exposure to ionizing radiation.
  • MRI has proven valuable in detecting and staging breast cancer, particularly when other imaging studies (mammography, ultrasound, etc.) fail to provide adequate information.
  • MRI as an addition to mammography has been shown to be useful in evaluating women at high risk for breast cancer.
  • MRI can successfully image the dense breast tissue common in younger women, and it can successfully image breast implants. Both of these are difficult to image using traditional mammography.
  • If a suspicious lesion is seen with MRI only, MRI can provide guidance for biopsy.
  • The contrast material used in MRI exams is less likely to produce an allergic reaction than the iodine-based contrast materials used for conventional x-rays and CT scanning.

Patients Recommended to Have a Breast MRI:

The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends that all high-risk women — those with a greater than 20% lifetime risk of breast cancer — have a breast MRI and a mammogram every year. For most women, these combined screenings should start at age 30 and continue as long as the woman is in good health. According to ACS guidelines, high-risk women include those who:

  • have a known BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation
  • have a first-degree relative (mother, father, brother, sister, or child) with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation and have not had genetic testing themselves
  • find out they have a lifetime risk of breast cancer of 20-25% or greater, according to risk assessment tools that are based mainly on family history
  • had radiation therapy to the chest for another type of cancer, such as Hodgkin’s disease, when they were between the ages of 10 and 30 years
  • have a genetic disease such as Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Cowden syndrome, or Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndrome, or have one of these syndromes in first-degree relatives

The American Cancer Society also recommends that women at moderately increased risk of breast cancer — those with a 15-20% lifetime risk — talk with their doctors about the possibility of adding breast MRI screening to their yearly mammogram. According to ACS guidelines, this includes women who:

  • find out they have a lifetime risk of breast cancer of 15-20%, according to risk assessment tools based mainly on family history
  • have a personal history of breast cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS), or abnormal breast cell changes such as atypical ductal hyperplasia or atypical lobular hyperplasia
  • have extremely dense breasts or unevenly dense breasts when viewed by mammograms

If you are a candidate for a breast MRI, please talk to your doctor and tell them that you’d like to be seen at Wheaton Iowa!

Breast MRI Services Available:

Sartori Memorial Hospital in Cedar Falls - Mammography Department

Hours: Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Schedule an Appointment: 319.272.7080
An order from your doctor for the test you need is required to be sent to us before your scheduled appointment.

Test Results

Once your breast MRI is complete, your results will be shared with your family doctor and they will let you know what you need to do next if something is found.

How to Schedule an Appointment

An order from your doctor for the test you need must be sent to us before your scheduled appointment. Please talk to your doctor and tell them that you’d like to be seen at Wheaton Iowa!

If you have questions or would like more information about Wheaton Iowa imaging services, please call 319.272.7070.

We look forward to talking to you!