Side Effects of Gadolinium Contrast Agent Used in MRI and MRA Scans
Gadolinium is a toxic metal which is used as part of a contrast agent. These contrast agents are supposed to carry the gadolinium out of the body through urine, but it often stays in the body and causes serious and sometimes life-threatening side effects.
While most people affected by Gadolinium experience only temporary mild side effects such as nausea and headache, the buildup of Gadolinium inside the body can lead to serious and sometimes life-threatening side effects including impaired brain function and a condition called Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF) which is also known as Nephrogenic Fibrosing Dermopathy (NFD).
Symptoms of NSF/NFD include:
Intense burning sensation beneath the skin
Discoloration in lower arm and leg
Intense bone and joint pain
Skin thickening or stiffness
Gadolinium can also affect the brain resulting in memory loss and difficulty thinking, sometimes referred to as a brain fog. The degree to which Gadolinium affects the brain varies from person to person.