Breast MRI



A breast MRI scan uses magnetic waves and computers to make pictures of the breast. It can make 2- and 3-dimensional pictures.

Possible Complications

Problems are rare, but all procedures have some risk. The doctor will go over some problems that could happen, such as a reaction to the contrast material used to take clearer pictures. Kidney or liver problems may make it harder for the body to get rid of the material.

Pregnant women should talk to their doctors about the risks of having an MRI scan.



This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Edits to original content made by Denver Health.

a (Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Breast)


American Cancer Society 

National Cancer Institute 


Canadian Breast Cancer Network 

Canadian Cancer Society 


Breast cancer in women. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Accessed October 16, 2020.

Breast MRI. University of California at San Francisco website. Available at: Accessed October 16, 2020.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)—breast. Radiological Society of North America Radiology Info website. Available at: Accessed October 16, 2020.

Senkus E, Kyriakides S, et al. Primary breast cancer: ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines for diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. Ann Oncol. 2015 Sep;26 Suppl 5:v8-30.