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9 Things you should know! Contrast Scans - MRI (or) CT


Is Contrast agents are safe? - Patient Experiences who took contrast dyes - Types of Contrast Agents - Contrast Scan Prices - How much you are Paying? – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: 9 Things you should know! Contrast Scans - MRI (or) CT

  • MRI (or) CT
  • Contrast Scans
  • 9 Things you should know!

What is contrast agent why it is used in
Diagnostic scans? With the increased lifestyle
diseases in India, usage of diagnostic scans is
doubling each year according to WHO and other
national health reports. Most common diagnostic
scan procedures used by patients are CT scans,
MRI scans, Ultrasound scans, Mammography PET-CT
Scans. In order to obtain more clear
pictures inside our body, contrast agents also
called as contrast materials/contrast media are
used during the diagnostic scan procedure. Using
contrast materials in diagnostic scans helps the
radiologists to assess and distinguish normal and
abnormal conditions more precisely.
Contrast materials color the internal organs,
structures and blood vessels temporarily for a
certain period of time and make them clear for
better diagnosis on any medical conditiomore
ns. Types of Contrast Agents Oral Contrast
Media (Taking the contrast material as a food by
mouth) Barium sulfate contrast materials are
often swallowed through mouth to produce clear
images of the structures in gastrointestinal
tract such as pharynx, small large intestine,
stomach and esophagus. For some diagnostic
procedures, iodine-based contrast will be used
instead of barium contrast materials. Rectal
Contrast Media (a procedure where the liquid is
injected through the rectum) This is process of
applying the contrast material into the rectum
where Iodine based barium sulfate contrast
agents will be used to diagnose the lower
gastrointestinal tract.
Intravenous Contrast Media (Injecting
through vein or artery which then gets mixed into
the blood) Gadolinium/Iodine-based agents will
be injected into the vein in order to produce
enhanced pictures of internal organs including
heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, adrenal gland,
pancreas, spleen, uterus and bladder,
gastro-intestinal tract, arteries and veins,
blood vessels in brain, pelvis, legs, abdomen and
chest, soft tissues like muscle, breast and
skin. Contrast dye used in CT scans There are
several chemical substances used as contrast
material for CT scan procedure. Most common type
of contrast material are Iodine-based and barium
sulfate compounds. These contrast materials
usually injected into the veins/arteries, spine
disks, fluid space of spine and other cavities in
human body.
Another type of contrast material called
barium sulfate is most commonly taken as a food
orally. This chemical compound will occur in the
form of powder, liquid, paste and tablet. Here is
a clean summary about contrast vs non contrast CT
scan (source http//forums.studentdoctor.net/) C
T Abdomen Scan Non contrasts are widely used
for diagnosing trauma, headache, stroke and so
on.CT Abdomen with Contrast scans are commonly
used for evaluating infection (menigeal
enhancement, abcess) or tumor (mets) where the
impact of the infection is clearly diagnosed. CT
Chest ScanCT Chest Scans without Contrast is
commonly used for the evaluation of parenchymal
lung diseases, interstitial lung diseases etc.CT
scans with Contrast are more helpful in
evaluation of the mediastinum (lymph nodes,
infection), vascular or heart structures.
CT Abdomen/PelvisCT abdomen Pelvis
Non-contrast scans are commonly used for
analyzing calculi in the kidneys or ureters.
Because contrast enhanced scans can obscure
calculi if the contrast is beginning to get
excreted already. CT abdomen pelvis
with contrast are helpful in diagnosing
pancreatitis, diffuse abdominal pain, abcess,
diverticulitis, liver mass etc.,
CT AngiogramCT angiogram scans are
usually contrast enhanced scans for the
evaluation of the aorta, mesenteric vessels,
renal arteries, etc. In hematuria evaluation, non
contrast procedure is followed to diagnose the
stones and contrast procedure will be used to
look for renal masses and bladder
lesions. Contrast dye used in MRI scans MRI
Contrast scans uses the contrast dye called
gadolinium which consists of complex molecules
arranged with chemical bonds. A chelating agent
is used in order to prevent the toxicity of
galonium and to maintain its contrast
Gadolinium is injected into patients
through IVs and will be flushed out from the
body by taking plenty of fluids. MRI contrast
scans are used 1 in 3 scans for improvisation of
the image clarity in internal structure of body.
MRI contrast material are less allergic as
compared to the iodine based contrast material
used in CT scans. MRI Head Scan with
contrast MRI head scans with contrast are more
helpful in identifying the location and impact of
brain tumours. After the treatments, MRI brain
scans with contrast can help the physicians to
exactly monitor the tumor, dilation of fluid
spaces within the brain ventricles, hemorrhage in
trauma patients, eye disorders, and problems in
ear, pituitary gland disorders and more.
Also, MRI head scans with contrast
are good in diagnosing the vascular problems such
as aneurysm, arterial occlusion and venous
MRI Chest Scans with contrast Chest MRI with
contrast helps to assess the heart functioning
and its blood flow. It is very good in
identifying the abnormal tumors with its size and
impact. MRA Angiography with Contrast MRA scans
are usually done by using contrast materials
which is performed in order to identify the
proper blood flow in arteries and veins. It can
obtain the detailed view of blood vessels of
brain, neck, heart, chest, pelvis, legs, feet,
arms and hands. MRI Abdomen with Contrast To
check the blood flow, identifying the types of
tumors and to show the exact areas of
inflammation or infection, MRI abdomen with
contrast is used. It helps to identify the
blockages in liver, gall bladder, pancreas and
MRI Pelvis with Contrast MRI pelvis with contrast
scans produces more accurate pictures between the
area of hip bones. The blood vessels in bladder,
male/female reproductive organs, lymph nodes and
pelvic bones will be captured more clearly to
identify any abnormalities. MRI for Bone and
Joints MRI bone and joints scan rarely uses
contrast material. Some conditions like
inflammatory arthritis uses MRI joints with
contrast scan to identify the formation of
discrete erosions. It is also helpful in
diagnosing the infections in bone marrow more
Before and after Contrast Agents Safety Measures
before taking contrast agents You have to clearly
inform the radiologist about your previous
medical history. If you are have any kind of
allergies to the contrast materials, specific
food, drugs or preservatives, and then you have
to take the contrast material with some
additional medications to tackle the allergies
during the scan procedure.
Even if you are taking any herbal supplements for
any of your surgeries or for the medical
conditions, then you have to take alternative
medications before taking the contrast materials.
Also, if you have any history of diabetes,
thyroid problem, skin allergies, kidney/heart
disease you have to be careful and follow the
guidelines from your radiologists before the
contrast scans. Pregnant women should not
breastfeed their babies for 24-48 hours after
using the contrast materials. For MRI imaging,
using gadolinium contrast is usually avoided
apart from rare urgencies. During CT scans with
contrast, patients and their referring physicians
will be consulted by the radiologists.
Before and after taking Barium-Sulfate
Oral/Rectal Contrast Materials While taking oral
contrast Before taking barium sulfate
orally, you have to remain fasting for few hours
before the scan procedure. The taste of the
barium sulfate contrast materials will be
unpleasant but it is very mild and will not last
for long time. After the scan procedure, you can
flush out the contrast materials from the body by
taking more fluids
While taking rectal contrast When
applying barium sulfate via rectum, you will
sense the feel of stomach fullness and an urge to
expel the liquids. Later it is expelled from your
body through feces and the bowel movements will
be in white color for few days.
Before and after taking Iodine based Contrast
Materials When the iodine based contrast
materials are injected through IV, you may
experience a little discomfort during insertion.
Once the contrast material starts dissolving in
your blood stream, you might feel a warm
sensation with a metallic taste. You will be
advised to take more fluids in order to flush out
the iodine contrast materials from your
body. Before and after taking Gadolinium based
Contrast Materials Injection with Gadolinium
based contrast materials will give you a little
pain during insertion and after removal, but will
not last for long time. You might feel sudden
chillness in the IV injected arm and slowly it
disappears after a minute or two. Is Contrast
agents are safe? Contrast agents are safe to use
and it is used from over many decades. There will
be some discomfort and it will not last for long
period of time. Some people are allergic to the
contrast materials and they have to inform the
radiologist before the below symptoms become more
Allergic symptoms on Barium Sulfate contrast
scans will be stomach cramps, diarrhea, nausea,
vomiting and constipation. Inform your physician
immediately if you have hives, itching, red skin,
swelling of the throat, difficulty breathing or
swallowing, hoarseness, agitation, confusion,
fast heartbeat, bluish skin color. If the
patients have any history of asthma, cystic
fibrosis or any intestinal blockage, they have to
go with alternative medications before taking the
contrast. Iodine-based Contrast Material
side effects include nausea and vomiting,
headache, itching, flushing, mild skin rash and
some patients have wheezing, abnormal heart rate,
blood pressure variations and swelling of throat.
MR Gadolinium Contrast Material will not
produce allergic reactions like iodine-based
contrast agents. It is very mild and rarely
people experience hives and itchy
eyes. Pregnant patients should try to avoid
contrast scans apart from urgent and critical
conditions. After the contrast material intake,
Breast feeding women should not feed the babies
for 24-48 hours. Hence, contrast materials are
safe apart from some rare adverse reactions. But
even for patients with allergic reactions, most
of the diagnostic scan centres are well equipped
to treat them. How long it takes for contrast
dye to leave the body? If you need to do any
other additional tests like urine test or blood
test after taking the contrast materials, then
you have to wait for a day or two because the
contrast agents usually interfere with the urine
test results.
All the oral contrast materials will
leave from your body naturally if you take more
fluids after the scan procedure. If patients are
taking rectal contrast materials through enema,
then it will drained after the exam. Based on the
type of contrast material, it will stay in your
body for not more than 8-24 hours.
Patient Experiences who took contrast
dyes  I had the warm feeling for my CAT scan
but luckily none of the nausea. I would say
water, lots of water. If the iodine is making you
nausea, then drinking more water would help flush
it out of your system faster. Iodine is a type of
salt, so water should flush it out pretty quick.
Just an idea  I had the massive warm feeling
as well but it was okay    What bothered me
most about the procedure was the metallic taste.
I dont recall any lasting side effects,
though.  Ive had ink injections for all of my
MRIs, but I do not know if it is the same kind
that use for CAT scans. I never had any side
effects from the ink I had injected.  Slight
warm feeling running up arm down to stomach, no
Contrast Scan Prices (Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai,
Hyderabad, Delhi, Coimbatore) MRI contrast scan
price starts from Rs.3000 to Rs.4500, which
differs in every scan center. CT contrast scan
prices range from Rs.2500 to Rs.3500. But, if you
fix appointments for MRI contrast scans or CT
contrast scan through www.bookmyscans.com , then
the charges will be between Rs.1000 to Rs.1500
only. The most common contrast scan widely done
is MRI abdomen scan with contrast   ct abdomen
with contrast.
(91) 95 85 65 11 77 / 95 85 65 31 31
Source http//bookmyscans.com/blog/contrast-scans
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