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Invest Radiol. 1977 Jan-Feb;12(1):15-8.

Xenon inhalation as an adjunct to computerized tomography of the brain: preliminary study.


The purpose of this study is to determine whether computerized tomography can distinguish between brain tissue and brain tissue containing dissolved xenon at physiologic concentrations. Xenon is an inert gas of high atomic number (54), and is highly soluble in tissue, particularly in fat. Its presence in the brain after inhalation is manifested by well known anesthetic effects. Phantom studies using xenon in equilibrium at atomospheric pressure with water, corn oil, and milk samples of varying known fat content, demonstrate that xenon is detectable in all cases with a steep linear increase in change of attenuation factor (EMI number) with increasing fat content. In the rhesus monkey xenon is readily detectable at 20% inhaled gas concentration, with linear detectable at 20% inhaled gas concentration, with linear increase of attenuation factor with increasing concentration. The possible application of our findings to the study of brain pathophysiology is discussed. Since xenon is a potent although safe anesthestic, caution in clinical application is advised.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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