Gadolinium rises in Korean rivers | Contrast US is safe in kids | That thing's a carcinogen

Dear AuntMinnie Member,

One mostly unnoticed side story in the debate over gadolinium MRI contrast is the rising persistence of the element in the environment. New research out of South Korea has found rising levels of gadolinium in the Han River near Seoul -- levels traced to the number of MRI scanners in operation in the metropolitan area.

Gadolinium gets into the environment when patients who have received MRI contrast exams excrete it; it travels through the sewage system and into wastewater treatment plants, eventually ending up in rivers, bays, and oceans. Korean researchers discovered this trend in the Han River, finding that levels of gadolinium were higher downstream but lower upstream, away from populated areas.

Learn more about this intriguing study by clicking here, or visit our MRI Community at mri.auntminnie.com.

Contrast US is safe in kids

How safe is contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) in pediatric patients? A team from the U.K. sought to answer this question, and we're featuring the findings in our Ultrasound Community.

Researchers reviewed the reports of more than 300 pediatric patients and found no immediate adverse reactions to ultrasound contrast. While there were two delayed reactions, these were mild and did not produce any symptoms.

What's more, the group calculated that using CEUS enabled clinicians to avoid 97 MRI exams and 71 CT procedures, with their potential for side issues such as radiation exposure. Learn more by clicking here, or go to ultrasound.auntminnie.com.

That thing's a carcinogen

Accurate or not, radiologists have a reputation for being stuck in their darkrooms all day. It's a stereotype that #MyRadGirlfriend cartoonist Ryan McBeth has fun with in the latest installment of the strip. Check it out by clicking here.

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