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WARNING: CONTRAST DYE USED IN MRI PROCEDURES CAN BE DANGEROUS

Tuesday, 4th November 2008

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Magnetic Resonance Imaging tests, MRIs and Magnetic Resonance Angiography, MRAs are commonly used by physicians to study and diagnose numerous conditions of the body.

Contrast material commonly used for these tests help the physician get a clear and detailed picture of the patient’s internal organs, tissues, bones and vessels. The contrast material, are commonly known as dye, is injected into the blood stream.

In recent years, the contrast agent of choice for most doctors contains a metal known as Gadolinium. Gadolinium is also used to make CD discs, computer memory, and television tubes. This substance is a metal. It is extremely harmful to the body. Because of the adverse effect this metal has on the body, the Gadolinium is coated with chelating agents to coat the metal and thereby protect the body from the dangerous effects of the metal.

Some of the manufacturers of the Gadolinium containing contrast agents have used inferior chelating agents. The effect of these inferior chelating agents is to expose the body to the harmful metal Gadolinium.

In order to rid the body of the contrast material after an MRI or MRA, the contrast material containing Gadolinium is transferred to the kidneys before it is urinated out of the body. Gadolinium is especially harmful to the patients with kidney insufficiency.

Unfortunately, Gadolinium exposure causes a rare, debilitating and potentially fatal disease known as Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF). This disease causes a thickening of the skin, connective tissues, muscles and internal organs throughout the body. The disease causes the body to harden from the outside in.

Symptoms from NSF include swelling, tightening, or thickening of the skin, colored patches, bumps or blisters, burning, itching or severe sharp pain in the effected areas, changes of skin texture; difficulty extending arms or legs, muscle weakness, deep bone pain in the hips or ribs and swelling of the hands and feet.

The United States Food and Drug Administration began issuing health advisory warnings concerning Gadolinium dyes as early as June of 2006.

On May 23, 2007, the FDA ordered that a black box warning be added to all Gadolinium-based contrast agent labels concerning the life-threatening risk associated with the use of contrast dyes containing Gadolinium.

The warning states that patients with severe kidney insufficiency who received Gadolinium-based agents are at risk for developing debilitating, a potentially fatal disease known as Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF).

The required warning includes advice to “avoid the use of GBCA’s (Contrast agents containing Gadolinium) unless the diagnostic information is essential and not available with non‑contrast enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Although the FDA requires the warning, this use of Gadolinium containing contrast agents is still allowed and are frequently used.

This article is reproduced here with permission of the author, attorney Brent Adams.  If you or someone you know has developed Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF) or symptoms after having an MRI or an MRA contact Brent, Adams and Associates for a free case evaluation.

2 Comments to 'WARNING: CONTRAST DYE USED IN MRI PROCEDURES CAN BE DANGEROUS'

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  1. First of all congratulation for such a great site. I learned a lot reading article here today. I will make sure i visit this site once a day so i can learn more.

    Thu 18th December, 2008 at 8:14 am
  2. Utah-Per said:

    To Den Swavalals: Thanks for stopping by.

    Mon 26th January, 2009 at 7:57 pm
 
 
 

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