Libyan Journal of Medicine

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Contrast medium-induced nephropathy: Aspects on incidence, consequences, risk factors, and prevention

G Sterner, U Nyman


Contrast media-induced nephropathy (CIN) is a well-known complication of radiological examinations employing iodine contrast media (I-CM). The rapid development and frequent use of coronary interventions and multi-channel detector computed tomography with concomitant administration of relatively large doses of I-CM has contributed to an increasing number of CIN cases during the last few years. Reduced renal function, especially when caused by diabetic nephropathy or renal arteriosclerosis, in combination with dehydration, congestive heart failure, hypotension, and administration of nephrotoxic drugs are risk factors for the development of CIN. When CM-based examinations cannot be replaced by other techniques in patients at risk of CIN, focus should be directed towards analysis of number and type of risk factors, adequate estimation of GFR, institution of proper preventive measures including hydration and post-procedural observation combined with surveillance of serum creatinine for 1-3 days. For the radiologist, there are several steps to consider in order to minimise the risk for CIN: use of “low- “ or “iso-osmolar” I-CM and dosing the I-CM in relation to GFR and body weight being the most important as well as utilizing radiographic techniques to keep the I-CM dose in gram iodine as low as possible below the numerical value of estimated GFR. There is as yet no pharmacological prevention that has been proven to be effective.

Keywords: contrast media, nephropathy, creatinine, estimated GFR, radiology, acute renal failure
AJOL African Journals Online