Being sent for a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan can be a frightening and nerve-wracking experience for anyone.
You’re worried about what the test might find.
You take one glance at the MRI machine — which looks like a tiny space pod from Star Trek — and you’re already feeling claustrophobic.
But the greatest threat you face when getting an MRI may occur before the scan even begins.
If you’re injected with a contrast agent to help produce sharper images, you may be starting down a dangerous road that could lead to cancer or a lifetime of neurological disease.
You see, we’ve been told for years that these contrast agents are “harmless dyes” that we naturally pee out of our systems in a day or two.
But the truth is that many of these common dyes contain a highly toxic metal called gadolinium. And when researchers recently decided to see whether our bodies were naturally excreting the gadolinium like we’d been told, they made an alarming discovery.
In fact, three recent studies have found evidence of gadolinium pooling in patients’ brains after MRIs.
Dr. Emmanuel Kanal from the University of Pittsburgh, who recently analyzed the studies, said they have “the entire international radiological community — and the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) — on edge.”
And for good reason, if you ask me.
You see, the FDA has told patients and medical professionals for years that contrast agents containing gadolinium — such as such as Omniscan and Magnevist — were only dangerous for people with kidney disease who couldn’t excrete them fast enough.
Gadolinium contrast agents have even been found to cause a potentially fatal condition called nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF) in people with bad kidneys.
However, in this recent research, even patients with healthy kidneys were retaining gadolinium. And that comes as no surprise to me. I often test at my clinic for heavy metals, and it’s scary how high gadolinium levels are in patients who have had MRIs, even if it was a decade ago. It’s like we’re being experimented on.
These high gadolinium levels can be incredibly dangerous because studies have proven that the metal can promote deadly cancer cell growth.
I’m not sure the risk ends there. Through my own research, I’ve found that the accumulation of toxic metals in our brains may be triggering a wave of neurological diseases, like Alzheimer’s and even Parkinson’s.
Of course, the real tragedy is that many patients are being exposed to toxic metals like gadolinium for no good reason. MRIs, like other imaging tests, are often overused and unnecessary. A study out of Canada a couple years ago looked at MRIs for lower back pain and concluded that more than half of them should not have been ordered.
If you have an MRI scheduled, do yourself a favour and ask the radiologist whether he’s using a contrasting agent with gadolinium. If he is, insist on something else.
And be sure to check on past MRIs to see if you may have been exposed to gadolinium. If you’re concerned about exposure, talk to an alternative health doctor who may recommend chelation or other therapies to help remove the metal.Wishing you the best of health,
Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
Left in the Brain: The Potentially Toxic Residue from MRI Drugs, gizmodo.com
Questions and Answers on Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agents, fda.gov