Nitrous oxide: Effect on accumulation rate and uptake of bowel gases

Eugene Steffey, B. H. Johnson, E. I. Eger, D. Howland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Breathing 79% nitrous oxide (N 2O) in oxygen increased the rate of accumulation of bowel gas during intraluminal bowel segment infusions of hydrogen, methane (CH 4), air, or carbon dioxide (CO 2) in 4 pentobarbital - anesthetized dogs more than did breathing 100% oxygen. A N 2O-associated increase in the volume of naturally produced intestinal gas in 5 halothane-anesthetized ponies corroborated the findings in the dog studies. In a second group of 4 dogs, a bolus of CH 4 or CO 2 was injected into the bowel lumen. When the dogs breathed O 2 the bowel gas volume decreased. Gas was virtually absent in the CO 2-containing segment within 20 min. Breathing N 2O increased the volume of the segments containing CH 4 while the CO 2 segments decreased less rapidly than during O 2 breathing. Breathing O 2 after 30 min of N 2O breathing caused little change in the rate of decrease in CO 2 segment volumes. However, the CH 4 segment volume ceased to increase and eventually returned toward control volumes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)405-408
Number of pages4
JournalAnesthesia and Analgesia
Issue number5
StatePublished - Dec 1 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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