Medical Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide is commonly used in anaesthesia; its use improves the quality and safety of induction of anaesthesia, facilitates faster recovery and reduces costs.

Nitrous oxide or laughing gas as it is commonly known was first synthesised by Joseph Priestley in 1772. It was initially used as a dental analgesic forty years after this and has been used extensively in a wide range of surgical procedures for both anaesthesia and analgesia.


There are certain situations where the use of nitrous oxide is contra-indicated. For example, in patients who have undergone recent eye surgery, involving gas bubble insertion (vitrectomy), as there is a risk that the nitrous oxide will diffuse into the bubble, causing it to expand and eventually burst. BOC Healthcare can provide a gas warning wrist band for any patient having undergone this type of eye surgery. This warns the anaesthetist or healthcare professional not to administer nitrous oxide amongst other things.

Nitrous oxide can cause a rise in intra-cranial pressure, so it should not be used in cases of head injury and it must never be used if the patient has any conditions where air is trapped in the body and expansion would be dangerous

Supply Options

Shah Brothers Oxygen And Home HealthCare LLP can provide medical nitrous oxide via a complete range of supply options.