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For Authors Continuing Education
Vol. 73, No. 7
ISSN: 1488-2159
September 2007


Effectiveness of 2 Scavenger Mask Systems for Reducing Exposure to Nitrous Oxide in a Hospital-Based Pediatric Dental Clinic: A Pilot Study


• Marshall M. Freilich, BSc, DDS, MSc, FRCD(C) •
• Laura Alexander, MHSc •
• George K.B. Sándor, MD, DDS, PhD, FRCD(C), FRCSC, FACS •
• Peter Judd, BSc, DDS, MSc, FRCD(C), Dip Paedo •

A b s t r a c t

Chronic exposure to elevated ambient air levels of nitrous oxide during nitrous oxide/
oxygen (N2O/O2) sedation can result in deleterious side effects to dentists and auxiliary
staff. A sampling survey was done in the outpatient dental clinic at the Hospital for
Sick Children to determine whether airborne nitrous oxide (N2O) gas concentrations
were within established regulatory limits. The effectiveness of 2 scavenger mask systems,
the Matrix Medical single-mask system and the Porter/Brown double-mask system,
for reducing airborne contamination in a clinical environment during the treatment of
pediatric dental patients was compared in a pilot study. The results indicated that the
double-mask system more effectively minimized N2O exposure during N2O/O2 sedation of outpatients for a variety of clinical pediatric dental procedures.


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