7 doctors weighed in:
Do MRI scans usually require an injection of contrast?
7 doctors weighed in

Dr. Tushar Patel
Radiology
2 doctors agree
In brief: Depends on diagnosis
Usually MRI scans of the spine and joints (shoulder, knees, etc) do not need a contrast injection.
Contrast is given for spine MRI scans to search for tumors and postoperative scarring. Mri scans of the brain, abdomen, pelvis can be performed with a contrast injection to help find a tumor, but these scans can also be performed without injection. Breast MRI should be performed with contrast.

In brief: Depends on diagnosis
Usually MRI scans of the spine and joints (shoulder, knees, etc) do not need a contrast injection.
Contrast is given for spine MRI scans to search for tumors and postoperative scarring. Mri scans of the brain, abdomen, pelvis can be performed with a contrast injection to help find a tumor, but these scans can also be performed without injection. Breast MRI should be performed with contrast.
Dr. Tushar Patel
Dr. Tushar Patel
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1 comment
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
And the contrast is different than that used with CT scans, allergies and effects quite different.
Dr. Michael Korona
Radiology - Interventional
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Not always
See radiologyinfo.Org. Your doc will order contrast if needed.

In brief: Not always
See radiologyinfo.Org. Your doc will order contrast if needed.
Dr. Michael Korona
Dr. Michael Korona
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Dr. Peter Nefcy
Radiology
In brief: Maybe
It depends on your symptoms and the disease or injury your Doctor thinks you may have.
In my MRI practice, less than 33% of all MRI studies require contrast injection.

In brief: Maybe
It depends on your symptoms and the disease or injury your Doctor thinks you may have.
In my MRI practice, less than 33% of all MRI studies require contrast injection.
Dr. Peter Nefcy
Dr. Peter Nefcy
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Dr. Carl Decker
Radiology
In brief: Sometimes.
It all depends on the region being scanned and the indication for the study.
Generally speaking contrast is used when looking for tumor and infection. It is also good for highlighting vessels, but is not always necessary with mri.

In brief: Sometimes.
It all depends on the region being scanned and the indication for the study.
Generally speaking contrast is used when looking for tumor and infection. It is also good for highlighting vessels, but is not always necessary with mri.
Dr. Carl Decker
Dr. Carl Decker
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