I.V. drug used during an MRI leaves toxic metal residue

A new study in the journal <em>Radiology</em> confirms previous claims that certain contrast agents used in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) pass the blood&#8211;brain barrier and leave behind a potentially toxic metal.

A new study in the journal Radiology confirms previous claims that certain contrast agents used in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) pass the blood–brain barrier and leave behind a potentially toxic metal. Gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs) were long believed to be excreted shortly after patients' MRIs, with any remaining residue insignificant. The latest study indicates that administration of various GBCAs leads to significantly varied levels of accumulation of residual gadolinium in the brain and bones of patients, even those with normal renal function. Still, only some, but not all, GBCAs result in residual accumulation of the compound, while the clinical significance remains unknown. The researchers call for caution when using these drugs as well as additional research to better understand their effects.