Clinical Biochemistry of N2O: Recent Advances

  • J. Rupreht
Conference paper


Contrary to the beliefs on the use of nitrous oxide (N2O) of ten years ago, the role of N2O in medicine has been established. More than ever, N2O is being used during total intravenous anaesthesia but to the anaesthesia researcher, N2O is of greater importance. N2O has proven to be a most excellent agent to study the phenomenon of acute tolerance to drugs which alter functioning of the brain [1]. There have been developments in the mechanism of the N2O-anaesthetic action [2] pointing towards a GABA-receptor related mechanism and to the fact that the reversible general anaesthetic effect may be more of an intracellular phenomenon than an extracellular one. Earlier experiments indicate that N20antinociceptive effect can be enhanced biochemically [3]. This, however, has not been followed by studies which would demonstrate if indeed, it is possible to improve N2O performance in clinical practice.


Nitrous Oxide Folinic Acid Pernicious Anaemia Total Intravenous Anaesthesia Acute Tolerance 
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© Springer-Verlag Italia 2000

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  • J. Rupreht

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