Whole-body MRI for preventive health screening: Management strategies and clinical implications.

Basar Y., Alis D., Tekcan Sanli D. E. , Akbas T., Karaarslan E.

European journal of radiology, vol.137, pp.109584, 2021 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 137
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.ejrad.2021.109584
  • Title of Journal : European journal of radiology
  • Page Numbers: pp.109584
  • Keywords: Cancer, Diagnostic screening programs, MR imaging, Preventive medicine, Whole-Body imaging


Purpose: To document the diagnostic yields of whole-body MRI (WB-MRI) screening for asymptomatic individuals by using a classification system that categorizes the findings by clinical relevance and provides a flowchart for further investigations, and to determine the influence of WB-MRI findings on clinical decision-making. Methods: In this institutional review board-approved study, a retrospective review of individuals who underwent WB-MRI between 2009 and 2020 was conducted, and asymptomatic participants who underwent non-contrast enhanced comprehensive WB-MRI for screening were enrolled. Participants were classified into four categories based on WB-MRI findings, and those with relevant findings (i.e., categories 3 and 4) were referred for further diagnostic workup. The participants? medical records were investigated, and interviews were conducted to reveal false-negative findings and identify the number of WB-MRI?triggered treatments. Results: We included 576 participants (377 [65.4 %] men, 199 [34.6 %] women; mean age, 48.40 ? 10.82 years), of which 266 (46.2 %) and 310 (53.8 %) underwent WB-MRI with 1.5 T and 3.0 T magnets, respectively. Approximately one-third of the participants showed clinically relevant findings, and 65 (11.2 %) received a treatment triggered by WB-MRI. Notably, 15 (2.6 %) and 28 (4.8 %) participants had cancers and intracranial aneurysms, respectively. Of the 576 participants, 16 (2.8 %) had false-negative findings, among which five had cancers. Conclusion: WB-MRI yields numerous important findings that trigger therapeutic interventions in a large sample of asymptomatic adults. However, considering its inherent limitations, WB-MRI might be inadequate for detecting malignancies such as colon, thyroid, and breast cancers; thus, it may serve as a complementary screening method for health-conscious individuals.