A single dose of the contrast agent gadobenate dimeglumine can help liver donorsavoid multiple MRI examinations during the screening process, cutting down ontime and cost without compromising accuracy, say researchers from the Yonsei UniversityCollege of Medicine in Seoul, Korea.
For the study, 11 potential liver donors underwent MRI examinations after asingle dose of gadobenate dimeglumine in order to screen them for donor adequacy.The researchers were able to find anatomical abnormalities in six of the patientsthat potentially could have affected either the selection or the surgery process.The MRI results were all corroborated at surgery.
"Preoperative imaging is crucial for both the selection of potential livingliver donors and the planning of surgery because it reveals the exact anatomyof the donor liver. By performing MRI on a potential donor, doctors can assessany abnormality or variation in the liver itself, its vessels or its bile duct.To improve the accuracy of MRI, contrast media is used," said Myeong-JinKim, MD, one of the researchers on the study.
According to the researchers, there are different types of contrast agents.The more widely used (gadolinium-based agents) are good for imaging the liverand pathologic lesions and vessels, but not the bile duct. Other types (suchas mangafodipir trisodium) can improve imaging of the liver and bile duct, butnot the vessels. "As a result, the potential donor may need to undergotwo separate MRI examinations so that the different contrast agents can be used.Gadobenate dimeglumine can help image the liver, bile duct and vessels all atonce," said Dr. Kim.
"Our study shows that the use of this new agent may decrease the examinationcosts and time for preoperative MRI for potential living liver donors. By accurateevaluation of both vascular and biliary anatomy, adequate preoperative planningcan be ensured and it may be helpful to decrease the potential postoperativecomplications," said Dr. Kim.
The study appears in the August 2005 issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology.
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