MRI Contrast Agents: Developments, Challenges, and Future Trends

Sami S. Alshowiman, Ayman K. Alswailem, Omar A. Almohizy, Abdurrahman A. Alfawaz, Abdulaziz A .Ibn Alshaikh


Contrast agents in medicine are chemical materials used to improve tissue and fluid contrast in the body during medical imaging. It is mainly used in improving the visibility of blood vessels and the gastrointestinal tract. Some types of contrast materials are used in a medical imaging examination and can be classified according to the imaging technique used. The first contract agent dates back to 1988 which is called gadopentetate dimeglumine (Magnevist®) and was allocated for Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Then, I has become available in clinical use. Afterwards, many studies have examined the capability of MRI contrast agents to be used in diagnostic imaging in all parts of the body including the skin, the central nervous system, heart and circulation, breast, lungs, musculoskeletal and lymphatic systems, and even the gastrointestinal tract. Nowadays, MRI contrast agents are widely used in clinical practice and have expanded beyond the imitational expectations to be a key tool in disease diagnosis around the world. Contrast-Enhanced (CE) MRI keeps in development and new technologies have emerged and new agents were introduced, with great opportunity being provided to ensure better imaging and patient management practices. Also, new clinical challenges were associated with the progress in CE-MRI. This paper aims to overview the historical development of MRI and contrast materials in order to shed light on the clinical development of CE-MRI. Also, the paper overviews the contemporary perspectives and clinical challenges associated with CE-MRI with the provision of significant future trends.

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