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Everything you need to know about Computed Tomography (CT) & CT Scanning


IV Contrast

question1. Why do we use IV contrast material?
question2. Do you use serum creatinine levels or GFR in your practice for establishing risk prior to CT scanning?
question3. What is GFR and why is it a more accurate measure than simply getting a creatinine level?
question4. Why are GFR numbers different for Caucasians and African Americans?
question5. Are all CT scans with IV contrast done the same way?
question6. What type of IV contrast material do we use and why?
question7. At what temperature do we store IV contrast material?
question8. Why do you warm IV contrast?
question9. What is the advantage of Visipaque as written in the literature?
question10. When do you use Visipaque-320 and when Omnipaque-350?
question11. Does the concentration of contrast mean that higher concentrations are better (AKA-isn’t a higher number better)?
question12. What is the volume of IV contrast material we use?
question13. What patients are considered high risk patients for IV contrast for CIN?
questionThis answer is very broad but here are some typical responses :
  • The patient with a history of renal disease especially if the patient is a diabetic
  • A patient on certain known nephrotoxic drugs such as aminoglycosides and amphotericin B
  • Dehydrated patients regardless of the cause
  • Patients with poor cardiac status including congestive heart failure
  • Patients with multiple myeloma
  • Patients with recent contrast injection of more than 100-120 ml in the preceding 24 hours (potential increased risk)

Recent articles question ehether iodinated contrast alone is really a risk factor for CIN. Many articles now question if not giving IV contrast when needed actually puts the patient at greater risk than giving it. Stayed tuned for further updates.


"Intravenous contrast material administration was not associated with excess risk of AKI acute kidney injury , dialysis, or death, even among patients with comorbidities reported to predispose them to nephrotoxicity."

Intravenous contrast material exposure is not an independent risk factor for dialysis or mortality.
McDonald RJ et al.
Radiology. 2014 Dec;273(3):714-25


"Within this cohort, the risks of AKI acute kidney injury ( OR odds ratio , 0.94; 95% confidence interval [ CI confidence interval ]: 0.83, 1.07; P = .38), emergent dialysis ( OR odds ratio , 0.96; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.54, 1.60; P = .89), and 30-day mortality (hazard ratio [ HR hazard ratio ], 0.97; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.87, 1.06; P = .45) were not significantly different between the contrast group and the noncontrast group. Although patients who developed AKI acute kidney injury had higher rates of dialysis and mortality, contrast material exposure was not an independent risk factor for either outcome for dialysis ( OR odds ratio , 0.89; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.40, 2.01; P = .78) or for mortality ( HR hazard ratio , 1.03; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.82, 1.32; P = .63), even among patients with compromised renal function or predisposing comorbidities."

Intravenous contrast material exposure is not an independent risk factor for dialysis or mortality.
McDonald RJ et al.
Radiology. 2014 Dec;273(3):714-25


"Although patients who developed AKI acute kidney injury had higher rates of dialysis and mortality, contrast material exposure was not an independent risk factor for either outcome for dialysis ( OR odds ratio , 0.89; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.40, 2.01; P = .78) or for mortality ( HR hazard ratio , 1.03; 95% CI confidence interval : 0.82, 1.32; P = .63), even among patients with compromised renal function or predisposing comorbidities."

Intravenous contrast material exposure is not an independent risk factor for dialysis or mortality.
McDonald RJ et al.
Radiology. 2014 Dec;273(3):714-25

question14. Do we have set cutoffs for creatinine levels and if so what are they?
question15. Can we pretreat patients who have borderline renal function? If yes then how?
question16. Should patients be NPO for CT scanning? If yes for how long?
question17. What are the common volumes of contrast used for IV injection?
question18. What kind of IV access is ideal for use for IV contrast injection?
question19. Has there been any new developments in technology that may help us high injection rates in patients who can not tolerate an 18g needle (or at times even a 20g)?
question20. Can any IV the patient has in place be used to inject the contrast material?
question21. Can we use a central line or a PICC line for injection?
question22. What about the new “purple PICC/central lines” I hear about?
question23. What are some of the common normal “side effects” of IV contrast agents?
question24. Is there a relationship between patients receiving chemotherapy and CIN?
question25. Is it ok for patients to have both an MR and a CT with contrast on the same day?
question26. Have you ever seen a patient develop diffuse erythema distal to the IV injection site in the absence of extravasation?
question27. Patients often report a metallic taste in their mouth following use of IV iodinated contrast. Is there an explanation?
question28. Are there any contrast volume limitations for the use of IV contrast?
question29. Can you tell me a bit more about GFR and what it really means?

 

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