Electrophysiological measures (CNV - EEG) and Nitrous Oxide at low doses in man

G. Pozzessere, F. Pierelli, P. A. Rizzo, A. Gerono, T. Niethammer, C. Morocutti, M. Timsit-Berthier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nitrous oxide(N2O) is a widely used inhalational anesthetic gas, but its exact mode of action and its distribution in the CNS are not yet well known. The aim of this research was to study the effects of N2O at low doses (10 percent) in the CNS of humans. Five healthy volunteers were tested. Contingent Negative Variation (CNV), Reaction time (RT) and quantified EEG recordings were taken while subjects were breathing air and thenN2O. A significant reduction of the postimperative positive CNV components during N2O inhalation was observed;no changes in EEG power spectrum and RT values were seen. These results could be consistent with an earlyN2O interference with processes underlying CNV resolution, while vigilance and attention were still maintained.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-214
Number of pages4
JournalItalian Journal of Neurological Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1982


  • contingent negative variation
  • EEG power spectrum measures
  • Nitrous oxide
  • reaction time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology


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