The Potential of High Resolution Magnetic Resonance Microscopy in the Pathologic Analysis of Resected Breast and Lymph Tissue.
Pathologic evaluation of breast specimens requires a fixation and staining procedure of at least 12 hours duration, delaying diagnosis and post-operative planning. Here we introduce an MRI technique with a custom-designed radiofrequency resonator for imaging breast and lymph tissue with sufficient spatial resolution and speed to guide pathologic interpretation and offer value in clinical decision making. In this study, we demonstrate the ability to image breast and lymphatic tissue using 7.0 Tesla MRI, achieving a spatial resolution of 59 × 59 × 94 μm(3) with a signal-to-noise ratio of 15-20, in an imaging time of 56 to 70 minutes. These are the first MR images to reveal characteristic pathologic features of both benign and malignant breast and lymph tissue, some of which were discernible by blinded pathologists who had no prior training in high resolution MRI interpretation.