Topic: Has anyone had repeat breast MRI’s?

Forum: High Risk for Breast Cancer — Due to family history, genetics, or other factors.

Posted on: May 23, 2021 10:31PM - edited May 23, 2021 10:31PM by Mimi820

Posted on: May 23, 2021 10:31PM - edited May 23, 2021 10:31PM by Mimi820

Mimi820 wrote:

Hello everyone, well it's time for my 6 month follow up. Without going into my history to much, I had to have a breast mri last fall. (I've had about 5-6 breast biopsies overall: fibroadenomas and ADH). The MRI in November led to needing a repeat this month. My Dr called and said it was ok but I will need another one in 6 months?!? I just don't get why they are having me do another breast mri in 6 months? Has anyone had this experience? I knew I would most likely have surveillance at some point of alternating mri and then mammo but this is different being repeated like this? Does anyone have any suggestions or insight? I want to know why!?

I meet with my Dr in June. I know she will say “I have busy breasts" or something like that because I bet she really isn't sure. thank you for your time:)

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May 23, 2021 11:50PM beesie.is.out-of-office wrote:

Do you have the radiology report from your MRI in November? If not, get a copy, and get a copy of the latest report. The answer to your question will be in the radiologist's report.

I'm guessing the November report was a BI-RADS 3, meaning that something was seen on tne MRI but the risk of it being cancer is very low; BI-RADS 3 would mean the radiologist assesses the risk to be no more than 2%. The usual follow-up with a BI-RADS 3 is 6 month repeat imaging for a period of 1 - 2 years, to monitor for changes. So the next MRI in 6 months is likely just a continuation of the standard BI-RADS 3 follow-up process.

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May 24, 2021 07:19AM - edited May 24, 2021 07:38AM by Mimi820

Thank you, Bessie. I will definitely look at the reports. I honestly forgot to look to see what the Birads score was maybe not thinking MRI's had one.


So then it's not uncommon to have breast mri's every 6 months? This will be my third next November. I also have a follow up diagnostic mammogram in June (had a stereotactic biopsy 6 months ago). My Dr days I may have to do this for a while. not sure if I can continue the roller coaster. Slowly considering prophylactic mastectomy:(

* wanted to add I did check the mri from October 2020 and it was a Birads 3. I have to obtain a copy of my recent MRI from 5/19/21. Guessing that’s also a 3. Also, forgot to mention I can’t take Tamoxifen because of a blood clotting factor I have (I am 47)

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May 24, 2021 11:31AM beesie.is.out-of-office wrote:

"BI-RADS 3 carries a management recommendation of short-term follow-up. The recommendation should be for the modality or modalities that best demonstrated the initial finding. While follow-up protocols differ across practices, a common schedule is at 6, 12, and 24 months. Once stability is documented for at least two, and at most three, years, the finding can be downgraded to BI-RADS 2 (benign)." Breast imaging-reporting and data system (BI-RADS) assessment category 3

If your MRI provided the clearest imaging of whatever caused the BI-RADS 3, then yes, you should have MRIs every 6 months until stability can be established with certainty.

When I've had 6 month follow-ups, I always went into them with the thought in my mind that the imaging would confirm the previous assessment by the Radiologist (i.e. that whatever she saw on the initial imaging is in fact benign) and that it would get me one step closer to be being fully cleared. So I viewed 6 month follow-ups really positively and they never worried me. Because the risk of cancer with a BI-RADS 3 is so low, the expectation of a 6-month follow-up is that the results will be good news.


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May 24, 2021 11:37AM Mimi820 wrote:

thank you, Bessie! That is a great way to think about it

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Jun 1, 2021 10:56AM CasM wrote:

Hello. I was diagnosed with ALH in late 2018 & I have had alternating mammo/MRI every 6 months since diagnosis. I asked my breast specialist in May '21 how long my surveillance will last and she stated "until you are 70". I was like WHAT?!!!

I also did not know that MRIs had a BIRAD status. I will definitely take a look at mine now. Thanks Bessie!

ALH diagnosis Oct 2018
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Jul 31, 2021 10:02PM DinoBiscuits wrote:

I’m high risk with very dense breasts at age 37. As a result, mammograms just aren’t as effective for me so my breast specialist recommended MRIs every six months. My most recent MRI showed some “areas of concern” that were classified at the time as BIRADS-3. I had an ultrasound follow up on Friday this past week, which resulted in the radiologist seeing an area she didn’t like. That turned into an ultrasound guided core needle biopsy and clip placement. Barring any awful news from the biopsy, I’m scheduled to continue my bi-annual MRIs in perpetuity. Exciting! 😬

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