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Gadolinium (Gd)

Gadolinium is a soft, shiny, ductile silver metal that belongs to the group of lanthanides (rare earth elements) in the periodic table. The metal does not oxidize in dry air but forms oxides in humid air. Gadolinium reacts slowly with water and dissolves in acids. At room temperature, it is a solid magnetic material.

Gadolinium applications

Gadolinium is used in the control rods of nuclear reactors and nuclear power plants. It is also used in the manufacture of microwave appliances, and some of its compounds have been used to make phosphorus in color televisions. Metalic Gadolinium is rarely used as a metal, but its alloys are used in the manufacture of magnetic and electronic components, optical discs, and computer memory hardware.

Some Gadolinium compounds are used in medicine intravenously as contrast agents to improve images on MRI and magnetic angiography (MRA). After infusion, Gadolinium-containing contrast agents are concentrated in the brain and body tissues, providing more excellent contrast in the image between normal and abnormal tissues, thereby facilitating the detection of neoplasms and tumors.

Gadolinium in the environment

Gadolinium is one of the most abundant rare earth elements. It is never found as a free element in nature, but it is contained in many rare minerals.

Impact of Gadolinium on human health

Gadolinium, like other lanthanides, forms compounds with low to moderate toxicity. Gadolinium salts can irritate the skin and eyes and are suspected to be carcinogenic. Gadolinium toxicity has not been thoroughly investigated.

Gadolinium does not appear to pose an environmental threat to plants and animals.

How can one determine if one has been exposed to Gadolinium?

We can measure Gadolinium levels in the blood and most biological materials.

Determination of metals is done by ICP-MS (Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry), a method that enables the simultaneous detection of many metals. Its sensitivity and accuracy are significantly better than conventional atomic absorption, with the ability to measure metals at concentrations up to 1 in 1015 (1 in 1 quadrillion, ppq)!



Important Note

Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for diagnosing and monitoring all pathological conditions. Between 70% and 80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. The correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased."

Laboratory test results should not be interpreted solely based on the numerical result of a single analysis. They should be interpreted in relation to each individual case, family history, clinical findings, and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your physician should explain the importance of your test results.

At Diagnostiki Athinon, we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and contact your doctor to ensure you receive the best possible medical care.

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