Gadolinium Poisoning

A chemical used to do MRI scans has been linked to several different health problems. The chemical used is gadolinium based contrast dye. There is much controversy surrounding such claims.

Popular movie star Chuck Norris filed a 10 million dollar gadolinium poisoning lawsuit in 2017 against the makers of a certain GBCD.

Norris claimed his wife became ill following a MRI in which a gadolinium contrast dye was used. Norris dropped this lawsuit January 2020. There was no settlement. Each side paid their own legal fees.

The issue of whether gadolinium poisoning done by gadolinium based contrast dyes is uncertain. This dye is safely used many times a day around the world.

Certain people may be at risk due to preexisting medical conditions.

Consult your doctor with any questions you may have.

What is Gadolinium?

Gadolinium is a metal with weak magnetic properties. It is naturally occurring and can be found all over the earth. It is a Rare Earth Element. As a side note these metals or elements are called ‘rare’ because there is very little of them.

Rare earth elements are everywhere, and they do not appear in high concentrations in any one spot. Hence they are difficult to mine.

Gadolinium belongs to a group of called ‘bone seekers’. This is because it settles and stays in the bones of your body. This is understandable because gadoliniums chemical properties are similar to that of calcium. It can stay in your bones for years.

What is Gadolinium Used For?

The medical industry uses gadolinium as a contrast dye agent.. A contrast agent is a chemical that is put into the body by injection or taking pills.

animation shows how gadolinium contrast dye enhances MRI images

Gadolinium is injected with a needle. Most people feel nothing. A few patients say their injected arm feels cold. A very small number of people have said they feel a bit sea sick. These feelings happen almost instantly.

Gadolinium does not actually dye anything a different color.

It is used to ‘light up’ the inside parts of the body. Gadoliniums chemical and electrical makeup allow it to ‘dye’ the inside body parts. The MRI machine by itself can ‘see’ the inside of the body.

The contrast dye makes this image sharper. MRI’s are done to help find medical problems a person may be having. 1 out of 3 MRI sessions uses gadolinium dyes.

The doctor uses a MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) machine to see this dye. To visualize this think of a X-ray. Gadoliniums unusual magnetic properties allow the dyed organs and blood vessels to be visible through with an MRI machine.

Sometimes the dye is injected part way through the MRI procedure. This is to increase the image quality of certain areas of the inside of the body.

Gadolinium is not radioactive.

What is the Short Form for Gadolinium?

The short way of writing Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agent is “GBCA”‘

There are several types and brands of GBCA’s. They are all used for the same purpose. To enhance the images produced by MRI medical machines.

There are 7 gadolinium based contrast dyes that are commonly used today. They are presented in no particular order.

PhotoType of Gadolinium Contrast DyeBrand Name
dotarem-contrast-dyeMacrocyclic IonicGadoterate (Dotarem, Clariscan)
bottle-of-gadavist-GBCDMacrocyclic IonicGadobutrol (Gadovist or Gadavist, depending on country)
prohance mri dyeMacrocyclic IonicGadoteridol (ProHance)
Omniscan-gadodiamide-dyeLinear IonicGadodiamide (Omniscan)
multihance-contrast-dyeLinear IonicGadobenate (MultiHance)
magnevist-contrast-dyeLinear IonicGadopentetate (Magnevist)
optimark-gadoversetamideLinear IonicGadoversetamide (OptiMARK)
magnetol-gadolinium-bottleMacrocyclic IonicGadopentetic acid dimeglumine (Magnetol - available in Israel)

Is Gadolinium Toxic?

Yes, gadolinium is toxic. It has no known function in the human body. It is also toxic to animals.

For over 30 years doctors and other medical experts though gadolinium was safe. This way of thinking has been changing.

Many individuals have noticed a wide range of negative medical conditions after exposure to gadolinium.

How Did Gadolinium Get in My Body?

Gadolinium got into your body from an injection of a contrast agent. This would have been done before or during a MRI medical procedure.

People with normal kidney function excrete the gadolinium in their urine within about 24 hours.

For others, this is not the case. For this group the Gd lingers in their bodies and causes medical problems.

You may have had a MRI done to diagnose cancer, find internal infections or bleeding. It may have been done to help figure out other serious health problems.

Gadolinium Side Effects

The most common side effect of gadolinium exposure is dizziness, slight headache, and slight sea sick feeling. Gadolinium related side effects usually start right after the injection. This happens in about 66% of people.

Note that this does not mean that 66% of ALL people will have side effects. It means that of the very small number of people who have a bad reaction 66% report some of the symptoms of gadolinium toxicity.

The remainder of the affected group, 33%, report symptoms of toxicity within 6 weeks.

More extreme gadolinium side effects include:

  • Headache
  • Swelling of mouth and lips
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Internal organ damage (extremely rare)
  • NSF – nephrogenic systemic fibrosis. (an extremely rare skin condition, usually in people with kidney problems)
  • Muscle weakness
  • Hard time extending arms and legs, feet or hands
  • Joint stiffness often with stiffness or swelling
  • Pain and burning feelings
  • Bone pain in ribs or hips
  • Extreme sensitivity to touch or temperature (particularly cold), that ‘pins and needles’ feeling
  • Hot flush
  • Hard to concentrate also known as ‘brain fog’
  • Buzzing feeling in body

This is not a complete list of the symptoms of gadolinium toxicity.

Buzzing Feeling in Body?

A buzzing feeling in the body can be caused by many things. This feeling is a common reaction to injury or infection.

Also, the swelling and inflammation that comes with allergic reactions can cause this buzzing feeling. Some call it ‘pins and needles’.

My Body is Vibrating

A vibrating feeling is very similar to the buzzing feeling. With vibrating the effects are more usually more noticeable. This can be very distracting and prevent people from working or driving. It is sometimes mixed with weakness and difficulty moving.

How Long Does it Take for Contrast Dye to Leave the Body

Most people excrete the contrast dye within 24 hours in their urine.

Gadolinium Deposition Disease

This is the most serious and symptomatic condition of gadolinium toxicity.

Many lawsuits have been started to seek compensation for this. People afflicted with gadolinium deposition disease lose their ability to have a normal life.

They cannot work. The spend most of their days suffering.

In 2017 the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) put out a public warning about the dangers of Gadolinium toxicity.

Gadolinium Poisoning Symptoms

The symptoms of this poisoning look like an alergic reaction to something. Much of the symptoms involve inflammation. The list near the top of this page details a few of the more common symptoms. Rarely is this poisoning fatal. It can cause a lot of suffering for the person.

Treatment for Gadolinium Deposition Disease

Professional medical intervention should be the first method of treatment. This is not always an option for some people. It may involve considerable expense. The medical help might be far away or not be available.

In these situations an oral chelation product like DMSA can be used. Directions for use are provided after purchase. Proper weight based how to use DMSA will be provided after purchase.

How Can I Prevent Gadolinium Poisoning?

Cancer patients who get a lot of MRI’s should keep a record their tests. Gadolinium can slowly build up in your body over time. Try to have as much time as possible between MRI tests.

Spacing your MRI tests out will give your body a chance to naturally get rid of (chelate) the gadolinium in your body.

One of your bodies natural chelator (blood and body cleaning agents) is glutathione.

This substance is manufactured inside your cells. You can not take glutathione itself because it will not enter your cells. Instead you have to take the precursor, the raw ingredient used to make glutathione.

This raw ingredient is N-acetyle cysteine (short form is ‘NAC’). NAC is a very inexpensive supplement that does not require a prescription.

Many high protein foods contain N-acetyle cysteine:

  • Turkey
  • Eggs
  • Cheese
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Beans
  • Yogurt
  • Chicken

NAC also offers many other health benefits.

How to Test for Gadolinium Poisoning

The Provoked Urine Test is the easiest way to test for gadolinium. This is available here. It requires a doctors’ signature. You can not simply order it yourself (unless you are a doctor of course).

The test is inexpensive, around $200. The urine test is that it shows the presence gadolinium and 19 other toxic heavy metals.

Have had a MRI test recently or in the past? Do you have any or several of the symptoms listed above? If so you might want to consider getting tested for gadolinium poisoning.

How to Flush Gadolinium Out of Your System

With time the vast majority of people flush gadolinium out of the system. This occurs within 24 hours.

The people who think they may be sick from gadolinium poisoning should talk to their doctor. The doctor will most likely order a test for gadolinium toxicity. It might not be possible to see your doctor. There could also be a long wait for testing.

If you want to do a test now this site offers very fast testing. You can receive your test kit in a few days. You get the results 2-3 days after your test is done.

How to Remove Gadolinium From the Body

Gadolinium can be removed from the body with several chelation therapies. EDTA is an intravenous therapy that can be performed by a certified health professional. You should not attempt EDTA therapy on your own.

DMSA is a pill you swallow. DMSA has been used to remove gadolinium from the body. It is available without a prescription. Dosage is based on your body weight.

It has no known reactions with other medications you may be taking. Because a prescription is not needed DMSA is fairly inexpensive.

How to Remove Gadolinium From the Body Naturally

To naturally remove gadolinium you should eat high protein foods. The list is mentioned above. Fresh air and exercise, as always, helps the body rid itself of toxins like gadolinium.

This natural method of gadolinium detoxification can be improved by taking NAC (N-acytyl cysteine).

NAC is available here and is very inexpensive. Many people put it in smoothies. It tastes like sweet tart candies.

Many people actually like the taste of NAC.

You do not need very much so one bottle will last you a long time. How much you need is listed on the bottle.

n-acetyle cysteine bottle of powder 50 grams for detox
N-acetyle cysteine bottle of powder 50 grams for detox

Gadolinium Urine Test

What is gadolinium toxicity? An often heard first question. Followed shortly by questions about the gadolinium urine test. This test takes 6 hours. It is done in your own home.

provoked urine test
Gadolinium Urine Test Kit

It involves taking a provoking agent. It this case the provoking agent is DMSA. Your test includes free DMSA capsules. Full details are provided. All the courier fees are included in the single one time price you initially pay.

There are a few names for the urine test for heavy metals:

  • Urine mobilization test
  • challenge test
  • provoked urine test
  • 24 hour urine test
  • 6 hour urine test

These are just a few names for this test. It is the same test regardless of the name.

Doing the gadolinium urine test is quite simple:

  1. After your first morning bathroom visit you swallow the dmsa capsules
  2. Then you collect your urine for the next 6 hours. A container is provided for this.
  3. At the end of 6 hours you fill a small vial from your urine collection container (included in the urine test kit)
  4. On a form you indicated the total volume of urine collected
  5. Then put your sample vial and the paper work in the included prepaid shipping container box and call the courier company, Fedex. This is also free.

You get your results in 2-3 days via email. This very detailed report shows 20 heavy metals in your body, including gadolinium.

ABMRS

The health concerns about MRI’s is taken very seriously.

A non-profit corporation has been formed to address the safety concerns related to magnetic resonance. ABMRS is the body that oversees certifying and credentialing medical professionals.

Health care professionals who are ABMRS certified are trained in proper safety procedures.

Prior to having your MRI if might be a good idea to confirm that your technician is ABMRS certified. There are 3 types of MBMRS certification:

  • MRMD (for medical directors and doctors, usually experts such as licensed radiologists)
  • MRSO (Resonance safety officer, usually this is a MR technician)
  • MRSE (resonance expert in safety, usually a certified medical doctor)

How Long for Gadolinium to Leave Body

In the vast majority of cases gadolinium leave the body in 24 hours.

Macrocyclic Gadolinium

There are 2 types of GBCD. These dyes are either linear ionic or macroycyclic.

These names just refer to characteristics of their chemical makeup. The different types and brands are used for certain body parts.

Scientific literature indicates both types are generally well tolerated. An ABMRS certified expert will be available to answer dye related questions.

The following overview of gadolinium poisoning and GBCD’s is opinion only. It should not be taken as medical advice or scientific fact. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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