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I'm a neurosurgeon and should be able to help you.
Do you have the report?
No tumor, no swelling, no stroke, no bleed.
The tiny area of FLAIR hyperintensity -- means there is a small white dot on your MRI in the specific area of the brain -- but a single small area that does not enhance (which makes a tumor and infection much less likely) is not really of a concern.
A breast cancer issue in the brain would generally cause swelling and enhancement of the tumor. The FLAIR hyperintense focus is not a tumor.
People often get these "white spots" as they get older, and it can be a result of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, migraines over years affecting parts of the brain, causing these changes.
The MRI is not concerning for cancer.
Yes, we can see those in 49 year olds.
Most people have something like this, and by the time people turn 60 or 70 - most people have multiple spots like this.
Small tumors may not enhance, as there may not be enough blood vessels to "light" up the tumor. So, theoretically, a tiny area of tumor can be missed by the MRI.
Oncologists will usually order some type of followup (why did they get the MRI in the first place?).
If you did not have a history of breast cancer -- I would have zero concern.
With the history of breast cancer -- one has to be vigilant about possible spread of the cancer -- but the spot on the MRI is not one of concern to me, since there was no enhancement or swelling in that area. Even at 3mm, some enhancement in that area would have been concerning. To see no enhancement is reassuring.
OK - nothing on the MRI would be the cause of the headaches or other symptoms.
If the 3.6 mm was a tumor, one would expect to see some edema around the lesion on the other sequences, like the T2 sequence.
So the fact they did not see anything on that picture is reassuring.
If this is a breast cancer -- it should enhance.
Some type of tumors don't enhance -- like low grade gliomas -- but that would not show up like this.
A low grade glioma would not enhance, and often can't be seen very easily on the MRI, but one side of the brain can look more "plump" than the other.
At this point you should feel OK. This, by your description on the report is not a tumor. There is nothing concerning on the report to say this is a tumor.
Yes, I have seen hundreds of MRIs with tumors, and they generally are very obvious on the imaging scan.
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3.6 mm isn't too small to see enhancement -- so the lack of enhancement in this area is the most reassuring sign that this is not a spread of breast cancer to this area.
Best of luck to you.
Hello - I couldn't previously answer the question because it wouldn't allow me to do so.
But now I can, so:
1) the CT scan would not show these types of spots -- MRI would be needed for comparison from a year ago. A normal CT of the brain from two years ago doesn't mean that this "spot" wasn't there at the time.
2) these spots are very common - and it is true -- if something is 3mm in size, there really isn't a way to be 100% sure about anything. Could it be a small tumor, which is growing, but the MRI caught it at the early stages? Possibly, but the likelihood of this is very small, and it didn't enhance on the MRI. The common things are common, and it is very likely that this is just what it looks like - a "spot" that is commonly seen in many people's brain that has nothing to do with cancer.