Measurement of gadolinium retention: current status and review from an applied radiation physics perspective
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OBJECTIVE: This article briefly reviews the main measurement techniques for the non-invasive detection of residual gadolinium (Gd) in those exposed to gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs). Approach and Main results: The current status of in vivo Gd measurement is discussed and is put into the context of concerns within the radiology community. The main techniques are based on applied atomic/nuclear medicine utilizing the characteristic atomic and nuclear spectroscopic signature of Gd. The main emission energies are in the 40-200 keV region and require spectroscopic detectors with good energy resolution. The two main techniques, prompt gamma neutron activation analysis and x-ray fluorescence, provide adequate detection limits for in vivo measurement, whilst delivering a low effective radiation dose on the order of a few µSv. SIGNIFICANCE: Gadolinium is being detected in measureable quantities in people with healthy renal function who have received FDA approved GBCAs. The applied atomic/nuclear medicine techniques discussed in this review will be useful in determining the significance of this retention, and will help on advising future administration protocols.
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