Abbreviated Breast MRI

Abbreviated Breast MRI for Dense Breast Tissue

Nearly half of women in the U.S. have dense breast tissue. Dense breasts make cancer more difficult to detect with mammograms. If you have dense breast tissue or would like a little extra peace of mind, you may benefit from Abbreviated Breast MRI.

Breast MRI is the most sensitive test available for breast cancer detection. Our Abbreviated Breast MRI exam can be a valuable diagnostic tool, particularly for patients at intermediate risk for breast cancer. It is described as Abbreviated because it can be done in less than half the time of traditional Breast MRI and costs significantly less. This procedure is not yet covered by insurance.

  • Higher level of detail than mammography and ultrasound
  • Ideal for women with dense breasts
  • Faster and more affordable than traditional Breast MRI
  • Finds 200–300% more breast cancers than mammography alone
  Traditional Breast MRI Abbreviated Breast MRI
Procedure Time 45 Minutes 20 Minutes
Cost Out-of-Pocket Cost Varies by Insurance Carrier $400
Covered by Insurance? Intermediate to Low Risk Patients: Not Typically Covered High Risk Patients: Covered by Most Insurance Not Yet Covered

Patient Education

Abbreviated Breast MRI is a painless, radiation-free procedure. Like a traditional Breast MRI, patients lie face down on an exam table while magnetic fields and radio waves are used to produce detailed images of the breast. It is important to remain still throughout the procedure.

Prior to the procedure, you will need to remove all jewelry, hairpins, piercings, hearing aids, glasses and any other metallic objects. An IV will be placed in the arm to deliver a contrast agent that helps the radiologist better evaluate breast tissue. All contrast agents are FDA-approved and considered safe. If you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant, inform your doctor and the MRI Technologist before having this exam.

Note: Abbreviated Breast MRI can be beneficial for patients at intermediate to low risk of breast cancer. It does not replace mammography and is not for high risk patients. Traditional Breast MRI is still the standard of care for high risk patients.

Resources & Forms

Below are some medical forms and educational materials relating to your imaging procedure. Before your appointment at DRI Greensboro, you may wish to download, print and complete medical forms and review educational materials. Completing medical forms in the privacy of your home can save you time and effort when you arrive. 

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