Non-contrast Breast MR Imaging

Radiol Clin North Am. 2024 Jul;62(4):661-678. doi: 10.1016/j.rcl.2023.12.009. Epub 2024 Mar 7.


Considering the high cost of dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging and various contraindications and health concerns related to administration of intravenous gadolinium-based contrast agents, there is emerging interest in non-contrast-enhanced breast MR imaging. Diffusion-weighted MR imaging (DWI) is a fast, unenhanced technique that has wide clinical applications in breast cancer detection, characterization, prognosis, and predicting treatment response. It also has the potential to serve as a non-contrast MR imaging screening method. Standardized protocols and interpretation strategies can help to enhance the clinical utility of breast DWI. A variety of other promising non-contrast MR imaging techniques are in development, but currently, DWI is closest to clinical integration, while others are still mostly used in the research setting.

Keywords: Biomarkers; Breast cancer; Diagnosis; Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging; Supplemental screening.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Breast Neoplasms* / diagnostic imaging
  • Breast* / diagnostic imaging
  • Contrast Media
  • Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging* / methods


  • Contrast Media