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Suggested Consent Language: Contrast Material

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The contrast material used for an MRI exam, called gadolinium, does not contain iodine and is less likely to cause side effects or an allergic reaction. It is, however very important to know if you have ever had any allergic reaction (hives, swelling to the face, throat, lips, or tongue, itching, or difficulty breathing) to fish/shellfish. A previous allergic reaction makes you at risk for an allergic reaction to the dye. The contrast is eliminated by your kidneys, and for that reason your doctor will check blood work prior to the exam to make sure that your kidneys are working well. Gadolinium contrast agents may increase the risk of a rare, but serious, disease called nephrogenic systemic fibrosis in people with severe kidney failure. Nephrogenic systemic fibrosis triggers thickening of the skin, organs, and other tissues. There is no effective treatment for this serious, debilitating disease. The intravenous contrast sometimes causes a warm painless sensation at the time it is given.