New intrinsically radiopaque hydrophilic microspheres for embolization: synthesis and characterization.

Centre for Biomaterials Research, Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, University of Maastricht, P.O. Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht, The Netherlands.
Biomacromolecules (Impact Factor: 5.37). 02/2008; 9(1):84-90. DOI: 10.1021/bm7008334
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Polymeric particles currently used for embolization procedures have the disadvantage that they are radiolucent, that is, invisible on X-ray images, and consequently the interventional radiologist has to resort to angiography to (indirectly) monitor the fate of the particles. Here, we introduce intrinsically radiopaque hydrophilic microspheres. Since these microspheres can directly be visualized on X-ray images, using these microspheres for embolization purposes will allow superprecise location of the embolic material, both during and after the procedure. The microspheres, which are prepared by suspension polymerization, are based on the radiopaque monomer 2-[4-iodobenzoyl]-oxo-ethylmethacrylate and hydroxyethylmethacrylate (HEMA) and/or 1-vinyl-2-pyrrolidinone (NVP) as hydrophilic component. It has been shown that for clinically relevant X-ray visibility the spheres should contain at least 20 wt % iodine. At this iodine content, copolymerization with HEMA results in spheres that hardly imbibe water (EQ = 1.08). When HEMA is replaced by NVP, the volume swelling ratio can be significantly increased (to 1.33).

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