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Mayo Clinic Gives Advice on MRI Health Risks

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Jacksonville, FLDr. Carl F. Anderson of the Mayo Clinic explains that it is important to know the type of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) being conducted in order to know if there are any MRI health risks.

Anderson, answering a question from a concerned patient with kidney problems, said that some MRI scans can include contrast agents such as gadolinium in order to enhance the overall image. The contrast agents are generally injected into patients through an intravenous line in the hand or arm, Anderson said.

For patients with kidney problems, Anderson explained that there is no specific concern about having an MRI without a contrast agent. However, he added that those with severe kidney failure could have an increased risk of developing the rare disease called nephrogenic systemic fibrosis if they received a gadolinium-based contrast agent during the MRI.

According to Anderson, there is no effective treatment for nephrogenic systemic fibrosis, which "triggers thickening of the skin, organs and other tissues."

As a result, Anderson encourages patients with kidney problems to consult their doctors prior to undergoing an MRI, as a different imaging test could potentially be selected.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, nephrogenic systemic fibrosis can "involve the joints and cause significant limitation of motion within weeks to months in some cases."

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READER COMMENTS

Posted by

on
no risk with MRI, except for the gado contrast agent which is commonly used.... but only in patients with renal insufficiency

Posted by

on
Magnetic resonance imaging technique is used in the diagnosis of deformities of many internal organs. Many contrast agents can be used for better visualization of the internal organs and its morphology.
This article is focusing only on nephrogenic systemic fibrosis which results with the use of contrast agent gadolinium. What about other organs and contrast agents used. Please give a detailed note on adverse effects of MRI scans, so that patients would consult their doctors prior to undergoing an MRI


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