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Low levels of nitric oxide as contaminant in hospital compressed air: Physiologic significance?

Lee, KH and Tan, PSK and Rico, P and Delgado, E and Kellum, JA and Pinsky, MR (1997) Low levels of nitric oxide as contaminant in hospital compressed air: Physiologic significance? Critical Care Medicine, 25 (7). 1143 - 1146. ISSN 0090-3493

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Objectives: To determine whether the levels of nitric oxide found in hospital compressed air have a clinically relevant effect on oxygenation in intubated patients with normal lungs. Design: Prospective study. Setting: Cardiothoracic and surgical intensive care unit in a university hospital. Patients: Twelve postoperative patients receiving mechanical ventilation, interventions: Pure nitrogen and oxygen were substituted for hospital compressed air as a source of blending for correct FIO2. Measurements and Main Results: Hemodynamics and PaO2 were measured in nitrogen and oxygen used for blending oxygen during stable FIO2 levels. Inhaled nitric oxide was measured with a nitric oxide-chemiluminescence detector. There was no clinically relevant change in systemic hemodynamics. However, the Pao2 decreased significantly when nitrogen was used for blending. Inhaled nitric oxide levels varied from 2 to 550 parts per billion during use of hospital compressed air; no nitric oxide was detectable during use of nitrogen. Conclusions: The low concentration of nitric oxide in hospital compressed air improves oxygenation in patients with normal lungs receiving mechanical ventilation.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Lee, KH
Tan, PSK
Rico, P
Delgado, E
Kellum, JAkellum@pitt.eduKELLUM0000-0003-1995-2653
Pinsky, MRpinsky@pitt.eduPINSKY0000-0001-6166-700X
Date: 1 July 1997
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Critical Care Medicine
Volume: 25
Number: 7
Page Range: 1143 - 1146
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1097/00003246-199707000-00014
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Critical Care Medicine
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0090-3493
PubMed ID: 9233739
Date Deposited: 05 Mar 2012 20:42
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2021 14:55


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