Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) of the breast has been approved by the FDA for diagnostic purposes but not for screening of the general population, yet uses of both have been reported in medical practices and appear to be rising. The aim of this study was to better understand the utilization of breast MRI and the variations in use across community clinical settings. Preliminary findings suggest that the use of breast MRI by 225 women at HPHC between 2001-04 with prior breast cancer increased from 2001 to 2002, but then remained stable through 2004. The indications were evenly distributed and the utilization of breast MRI steadily increased among women without prior breast cancer, mostly for diagnostic purposes and less commonly for screening. Additional analyses assessing the downstream effects of breast MRI and a larger study to examine the diffusion of breast MRI across the CRN are pending.
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