Purpose: To determine whether dynamic magnetic resonance (MR) imaging enhancement parameters are associated with vessel density of malignant and benign breast lesions.
Materials and methods: Forty-five patients with 48 breast lesions underwent gadolinium-enhanced spoiled gradient-recalled echo (SPGR) MR imaging followed by excisional biopsy and Factor VIII staining and vessel density measurement in the lesions.
Results: The vessel densities were not significantly different in 25 malignant breast lesions as compared to 23 benign breast lesions. Among all 48 lesions, greater MR enhancement showed an association with increased vessel density. Seventy-four percent of all lesions with MRI enhancement amplitude greater or equal to three times post-precontrast ratio had vessel densities greater than the median of 172 as compared to 34% of lesions with enhancement amplitude less than three times, p = 0.02. The rate and washout of MR enhancement showed no significant association with vessel density.
Conclusion: Although there is an overall significant association between greater MRI enhancement amplitude and vessel density, MRI gadolinium enhancement of breast lesions is not an accurate predictor of vessel density.