What is Optison?

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Optison (perflutren protein-type A microspheres for injection) is a suspension that consists of small albumin microspheres filled with gas. Optison is injected intravenously before an ultrasound test or an echocardiogram. The microspheres provide contrast during ultrasound procedure to produce a clear picture. An ultrasound works by bouncing high-frequency sound waves off of different body tissues, such as the heart. The returning waves are transformed into a picture projected on a screen. Unlike x-ray, ultrasound does not expose a person to radiation. The gas-filled microspheres reflect the sound waves differently than tissue, producing a better contrast in the picture. Optison is administered only by a healthcare professional trained to do ultrasound procedures.

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