BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Disruption of the BBB in MS is associated with the development of new lesions and clinical relapses and signifies the presence of active inflammation. It is most commonly detected as enhancement on MR imaging performed with contrast agents that are costly and occasionally toxic. We investigated whether the BBB status in white matter lesions may be indirectly ascertained via examination of features on T1- and T2-weighted images obtained before the injection of a contrast agent.
CONCLUSIONS: In many cases, breakdown of the BBB in acute MS lesions may be inferred without the need to inject an MR imaging contrast agent. The inference relies on intrinsic properties of tissue damage in acute lesions. Although contrast studies are more accurate, they may sometimes be unnecessary.
The conclusion say it all, would you want the sort of right answer or the right answer? So it is worth having the the gadolinium-enhancing agent?