© 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland.Background/aims: To investigate the diagnostic performance of breast MRI in revealing mammographically and sonographically occult lesions requiring excision in patients with pathologic nipple discharge. Materials and methods: In this retrospective study, 57 women with pathologic nipple discharge who had normal or inconclusive mammography and ultrasonography results and underwent breast MRI were determined. Patients who had histopathological diagnosis or ≥ 1-year imaging follow-up were included. MRIs were classified as positive and negative according to final BI-RADS assessment categories. Diagnostic performance of MRI, including sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive value, and positive predictive value, was calculated for detecting both malignancy and lesions requiring surgery. Results: Abnormal contrast enhancement on the pathologic nipple discharge side was detected in 29 MRIs (50.8%), categorized as BI-RADS 4. Abnormal findings were solid masses in 17 cases (58.6%) and non-mass enhancement in 12 cases (41.3%). Despite normal conventional imaging results, 4 malignant lesions and 16 lesions requiring surgery were detected with MRI. The sensitivity and specificity of MRI for detecting lesions requiring surgery were 100% and 68.2%, respectively. The positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value were 55.1% and 100%, respectively. Conclusion: In conclusion, this study confirmed that MRI is a reliable tool to detect lesions requiring surgery in patients with pathologic nipple discharge. MRI should be used in routine workup in patients with normal conventional imaging and imaging follow-up can be safely applied in patients with negative MRI.