Contrast media extravasation

Case contributed by Dr Matt Skalski


Trauma patient reporting new elbow pain following a visit to the radiology department.

Patient Data

Age: 35 years
Gender: Male

There is a diffuse subcutaneous reticular pattern of increased density circumferentially about the elbow, which extends half way up the arm and half way down the forearm. The reticular pattern matches that of the normal anatomic septa within the subcutaneous fat. 

Case Discussion

The delineation of the normal fatty septa within the subcutaneous tissue by a dense fluid suggests extravasated contrast media, which in this case has spread quite impressively around the elbow, up the arm and down the forearm. 

Extravasation  of contrast media is a well-known complication of contrast-enhanced CT scanning, which has become more common since the introduction of power injectors which can introduce large volumes contrast material in a short period of time. 

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Case information

rID: 29422
Published: 23rd May 2014
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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