The aim was to compare the accuracy of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and intraoperative consultation (IC) for the diagnosis of adnexal masses, with reference to final histology. MRI was performed in 136 women with sonographically indeterminate adnexal masses. IC included macroscopic and frozen-section examination. Macroscopic examination and MRI determined size, nature, and presence of vegetations or solid portions within masses. All masses were characterized as benign or malignant according to previously published MR imaging and histopathologic criteria. Sensitivities, specificities, and predictive values for the diagnosis of malignancy of MRI and IC were assessed. Histology revealed 168 adnexal masses (99 benign, 23 borderline and 46 invasive). Frozen sections were examined in 151 cases. Among the 151 adnexal masses studied by both MRI and IC, respective sensitivities, specificities, positive and predictive values of both methods for the diagnosis of malignancy were 89.7% and 84.5%, 91.4% and 100%, 86.7% and 100%, and 93.4% and 91.3%. Sensitivities of MR imaging and frozen section for the diagnosis of serous versus mucinous borderline tumors were 33.3% and 93.3%, and 62.5% and 12.5%, respectively. MRI is less accurate than IC for characterizing adnexal masses. However, MRI may increase the relevance of IC for borderline mucinous tumors.