Intraoperative margin assessment to evaluate resected tissue margins for neoplastic tissue is performed to prevent reoperations following breast-conserving surgery. High resolution microendoscopy (HRME) can rapidly acquire images of fresh tissue specimens, but is limited by low image contrast in tissues with high optical scattering. In this study we evaluated two techniques to reduce out-of-focus light: HRME image acquisition with structured illumination (SI-HRME) and topical application of Lugol's Iodine. Fresh breast tissue specimens from 19 patients were stained with proflavine alone or Lugol's Iodine and proflavine. Images of tissue specimens were acquired using a confocal microscope and an HRME system with and without structured illumination. Images were evaluated based on visual and quantitative assessment of image contrast. The highest mean contrast was measured in confocal images stained with proflavine. Contrast was significantly lower in HRME images stained with proflavine; however, incorporation of structured illumination significantly increased contrast in HRME images to levels comparable to that in confocal images. The addition of Lugol's Iodine did not increase mean contrast significantly for HRME or SI-HRME images. These findings suggest that structured illumination could potentially be used to increase contrast in HRME images of breast tissue for rapid image acquisition.