Contrast firms hit with another NSF lawsuit

A group of contrast agent manufacturers has been hit with another lawsuit alleging that their products caused nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF), a debilitating skin disorder believed to be linked to gadolinium-based MRI contrast.

The lawsuit was filed on March 3 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California by William Paschal and his wife Patricia, according to The litigation names as defendants a number of contrast developers, including Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals of Wayne, NJ; GE Healthcare of Chalfont St. Giles, U.K.; Mallinckrodt, a division of Covidien of Hazelwood, MO; and Bracco Diagnostics of Princeton, NJ.

The lawsuit charges that Paschal contracted NSF in January after receiving intravenous injections of gadolinium contrast agents manufactured by the defendants. He claims he has suffered scarring from the contrast, which has impaired his kidneys.

NSF is a debilitating and occasionally fatal disease and can include fibrosis of the bone, kidneys, lungs, muscle, myocardium, pericardium, pleura, skeletal muscle, and testes. Attorneys for the plaintiff assert that the companies never tested the compound's safety on individuals with kidney impairments before marketing it, while tests on animals indicated internal and external scarring.

The companies have not yet responded to the suit, according to the Legalnewsline article.

Related Reading

ECR NSF studies raise as many questions as answers, March 7, 2008

Study offers more evidence that multiple factors up NSF risk, January 24, 2008

'Uniquely higher' relaxivity rates give gadobenate an edge, January 23, 2008

Studies outline techniques for ramping up MR in renal artery imaging, January 10, 2008

Gadolinium release linked to overall stability of contrast agent, may trigger NSF, January 9, 2008

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