GE issues warnings about Omniscan

The following just came out over the SMRT mailing list:

Vendor issues new warning on Omniscan MR contrast for patients with kidney disease

GE Healthcare warned European providers Feb. 7 to discontinue the use of gadodiamide (Omniscan) for patients who may be at risk for a rare and life-threatening skin disease.

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MRI explosion in Atlanta

In December, an MRI machine exploded due to a liquid nitrogen leak:

Two workers moving an MRI machine were injured Thursday after an explosion blew part of the machine into a wall. The workers were moving the machine at Atlanta Diagnostic Center in Kennesaw, said Firefighter Denell Boyd, a spokeswoman for the Cobb County Fire and Emergency Services Department. Boyd said liquid nitrogen leaked from the machine and caused the blast, knocking a 10-foot by 10-foot hole in the wall.

Several photos of the damage to the facility were taken by the MRI techs and distributed on the SMRT mailing list. Copies of these photos below the fold:

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FDA Advisory on Gadolinium contrast agents

The FDA has an updated Public Health Advisory on the safety of gadolinium-based MRI contrast agents. In a nutshell, patients with any sort of renal disease or otherwise compromised kidney function are at high risk of developing Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF) or Nephrogenic Fibrosing Dermopathy (NFD) if they receive gadolinium contrast agents for MRI imaging. There seems to be no risk for patients without compromised kidney function.

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