Contrast media exposure in the perioperative period confers no additional risk of acute kidney injury in infants and young children undergoing cardiac surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass



Recently, there has been an interest in the temporal relationship between contrast exposure (CM) and cardiac surgery suggesting that a “double hit” on the kidney function in close succession increases the risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) after cardiac surgery. However, data from young children is limited. The purpose of this study was to retrospectively evaluate the effects of preoperative CM exposure on postoperative AKI in infant and young children patients and to further analyze the influence of exposure time interval.


Patients (age ≤ 3 years) who underwent diagnostic imaging within 14 days before on-pump cardiac surgery between 1 May 2017 and 31 May 2018 in Fuwai Hospital, Beijing, were analyzed. Kidney outcome was assessed according to Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes creatinine-based criteria.


One thousand four hundred pediatric patients (192 CM and 1,248 non-CM) were identified. Postoperative AKI occurred in 57 (29.7%) of the 192 patients who were exposed to CM. Following propensity score adjustment, no difference in risk for AKI was observed between the CM and non-CM groups (RR 1.142, 95% CI 0.916–1.424; P = 0.264). Multivariable logistic regression of the CM group indicated that independent predictors of postoperative AKI were lower weight, lower preoperative creatinine level, and longer CPB duration. Time interval between CM exposure and on-pump cardiac surgery was not significantly associated with increased risk of AKI (OR 0.853, 95% CI 0.265~2.747; P = 0.790).


For pediatric patients who are soon to undergo on-pump cardiac procedures, there appears to be no need to hesitate in performing the diagnostic imaging investigations requiring CM, or delay CPB after CM exposure. These patients may benefit from increased diagnostic utility without increasing their risk of postoperative AKI.

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This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant number: 81670375; JL, principal investigator)

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Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Xin Duan or Jinping Liu.

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Ethics approval for this single-center, retrospective cohort study was provided by Fuwai Hospital. The committee waived the need for informed consent for studies because of the retrospective study design.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Guo, S., Bai, L., Tong, Y. et al. Contrast media exposure in the perioperative period confers no additional risk of acute kidney injury in infants and young children undergoing cardiac surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass. Pediatr Nephrol (2021).

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  • Acute kidney injury
  • Contrast media
  • Cardiac surgery
  • Cardiopulmonary bypass
  • Pediatrics