Sedation is an altered state of consciousness. It can be induced by drugs or even hypnosis. Medical sedation is usually induced by drugs and sometimes by hypnosis. Hypnotic sedation has even been used for major surgical operations. Anaesthesia is a form of deep sedation, where the patient is totally unconscious. But lighter forms of sedation can be obtained by using drugs such as nitrous oxide, diazepam and midazolam. Most medical drugs that produce sedation at low doses produce anaesthesia at higher doses. A good example is nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide in combination with oxygen produces this state at low doses. At these low doses nitrous oxide/oxygen sedation is called conscious sedation. At much higher doses it causes anaesthesia. Conscious sedation with nitrous oxide/oxygen is the safest of all forms of . During conscious s. with nitrous oxide/oxygen the patient is always fully conscious and cooperative. Other forms of conscious s. require careful monitoring such as blood oxygen levels and electrocardiography. With nitrous oxide/oxygen conscious s., these monitoring devices are no necessary. Conscious s. with nitrous oxide/oxygen does have some pain relieving properties, although these may be insufficient for most surgical procedures. In order to provide good pain control, local anaesthetics should be given. If this is done then conscious s. with nitrous oxide/oxygen is almost the ideal conscious sedation and pain control method. Conscious s. with nitrous oxide has been used since the late 19th century, for pain control in childbirth, trauma and for dental procedures. Nitrous oxide/oxygen conscious s. has also been used successfully for treating withdrawal states from all the common substances of abuse including alcohol, nicotine, cocaine, heroin and other opiates. It was first used for treating withdrawal states in the early 1980’s in Johannesburg, South Africa. It has also been used in successfully the U.S.A. Scandinavia and Germany.
PAN may only be used by registered medical, dental and nursing professionals. However, before using PAN, it is obligatory that such professionals must attend a short hands-on-training practical training under the supervision of an expert, such as Prof M Gillman. He has authored a presentation on the theoretical aspects of using PAN. The presentation is available as a (CD or via direct download). Those interested should write to Professor Gillman ( see below ).
Click here for training program on nitrous oxide.