Magnetic resonance imaging characteristics of granulomatous mastitis


      • Non-mass enhancement is a routine MRI finding in patients with GM.
      • Clustered ring enhancement is the most common NME pattern.
      • MRI has little discriminatory ability to differentiate GM from a malignant process.
      • MRI for initial work-up or follow-up should be avoided for patients with GM.


      Granulomatous mastitis (GM) is a benign chronic inflammatory condition of the breast. This study was performed to determine the utility of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in differentiating GM from malignancy. MRI findings in 12 women with clinical or histopathologically-proven GM were retrospectively reviewed. Non-mass enhancement on MRI was present in all 12 patients with clustered ring enhancement being the most common pattern (n = 7, 58%). Architectural distortion (n = 10, 83%), skin thickening (n = 10, 83%) and focal skin enhancement (n = 10, 83%) were also very common. MRI features of GM are often identical to features considered suspicious for malignancy on MRI.


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