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Mil Med. 2009 Jun;174(6):615-21.

Noninvasive in vivo monitoring of cyanide toxicity and treatment using diffuse optical spectroscopy in a rabbit model.

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Laser Microbeam and Medical Program, Beckman Laser Institute, University of California, 1002 Health Sciences Road East, Irvine, CA 92612-1475, USA.


Currently, no reliable noninvasive methods exist for monitoring the severity of in vivo cyanide (CN) toxicity, treatment, and resulting physiological changes. We developed a broadband diffuse optical spectroscopy (DOS) system to measure bulk tissue absorption and scattering. DOS was used to optically monitor CN toxicity and treatment with sodium nitrite (NaNO2). To perform experiments, the DOS probe was placed on the hind leg of rabbits. A sodium CN solution was infused intravenously. DOS and concurrent physiologic measurements were obtained. After completion of CN infusion, NaNO2 was infused to induce methemoglobinemia (MetHb). During infusion of CN, blood gas measurements showed an increase in venous partial pressure of oxygen (pO2), and following reversal, venous pO2 values decreased. DOS measurements demonstrated corresponding changes in hemoglobin oxygenation states and redox states of cytochrome-c oxidase (CcO) during CN infusion and NaNO2 treatment. Therefore, DOS enables detection and monitoring of CN toxicity and treatment with NaNO2.

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