Extravasation of contrast medium during CT examination: An observational casecontrol study

  • Z Alami
  • S Nasri
  • S Ahid
  • HH Kacem


Introduction: extravasation is an adverse reaction to intravenous injection of contrast medium (CM) during CT examination. The objectives of
this study are to determine the frequency, management and outcomes of extravasations and to assess risk factors for extravasation.

every incident of extravasation which occurred between March 2012 and March 31, 2013 was recorded in an extravasation form. Ethics Committee
approval was obtained and the patients gave their consent to participate in the study. Data collected in the form included patients' age, sex,  comorbidities, symptoms, CM used, injection mode, site and rate,  extravasated volume, location of extravasation, severity of injury,  treatment and patient outcome. Each case was matched with 4 controls of the same age ± 5 years and the same gender when possible.

Results: extravasation occurred in 18 (7 women, 11 men) out of 2,000 injections of CM (0.9%) with a median age of 53 (10-78) years. Automated injection was performed in all cases with a mean rate of 1.7ml/s. Large  extravasated volumes (B 50ml) were more observed in patients  undergoing CT angiography (28.6% vs. 6.6%, although not significant P=0.112). Multivariate analysis revealed a significant association between patients with cardiac diseases and extravasation (OR: 7.3, 95% CI (1.09-49.05), P=0.04) whereas the injection rate is a protective factor from extravasation (P=0.002).

Conclusion: extravasation of CM results in mild to moderate adverse effects in all cases. Our study suggests that patients with cardiac disease are more predisposed to contrast extravasation than others. Further and larger studies are needed to confirm this trend.


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eISSN: 1937-8688