Breast MRI enhancement curves

Following administration of Gadolinium there can be three possible enhancement kinetic curves for a lesion on breast MRI (these are also applied in other organs such as prostate MRI). These are sometimes termed the Kuhl enhancement curves.

  • type I curve: progressive enhancement pattern
    • typically shows a continuous increase in signal intensity throughout time 
    • usually considered benign with only a small proportion of (~9%) of malignant lesions having this pattern
  • type II curve: plateau pattern
    • initial uptake followed by the plateau phase towards the latter part of the study
    • considered concerning for malignancy
  • type III curve: washout pattern
    • has a relatively rapid uptake shows reduction in enhancement towards the latter part of the study
    • considered strongly suggestive of malignancy
Breast imaging and pathology
Share article

Article information

rID: 13886
System: Breast
Section: Approach
Tag: cases
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Breast MRI enhancement kinetics
  • MRI enhancement pattern on breast lesions
  • Kuhl enhancement curves

Support Radiopaedia and see fewer ads

Cases and figures

  • Case 1: type I enhancement curve - fibroadenoma
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 2: type I curve
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 3: type II curve
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 4: type III curve
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.