We know that mammograms are the best way to detect breast cancer, but some women may require a different or an additional screening. Dr. Jennifer Rollenhagen, a fellowship trained breast radiologist with Mercy Health Comprehensive Breast Center in Grand Rapids, shared some information about abbreviated breast MRI.
In addition to knowing your normal and doing monthly self-breast exams, Mercy Health recommends yearly screening beginning at age 40+. This may begin earlier if you are considered at a higher risk. This is important because while mammograms don’t prevent breast cancer, but they can save lives by finding breast cancer as early as possible, when it’s most treatable.
Some of the benefits:
- high sensitivity for invasive breast cancer
- shorter exam (~8 minutes) compared to full protocol (~25 minutes)
- proven to be as accurate as full protocol in multi-institutional research trial (Mercy Health participated)
- can also assess breast implant integrity
Some of the indicators for an abbreviated breast MRI include:
- Women 40 years and older
- Women under 40 at high risk of developing breast cancer
- No current breast symptoms, unless have already had recent diagnostic imaging
- Have had a screening mammogram within the past year
Mercy Health Comprehensive Breast Center in Grand Rapids is currently the only location in West Michigan that offers this technology and service. For more information they can visit MercyHealth.com or they should speak to their primary care provider for a referral.
For more information about abbreviated breast MRI visit