Magnetic resonance (MR) images of 12 fresh uterine specimens obtained with a high-resolution surface coil were correlated with findings on gross and microscopic pathologic examination. The uterine wall can be differentiated into three distinct zones: a central high-intensity zone, a junctional low-intensity band, and a peripheral medium-intensity area. Whereas the endometrium (basale and functionale) corresponded to the high-intensity zone, the myometrium correlated best with the combined width of the areas of low and medium signal intensity. The signal intensity of a leiomyoma varied, depending on its cellularity. Primary endometrial and cervical carcinomas were clearly shown on MR images, as were other abnormalities such as adenomyosis and Nabothian cysts. The potential usefulness of MR imaging in detecting and staging uterine neoplasms is discussed.