NARCOTIC EFFECTS OF NITROUS OXIDE AND COMPRESSED AIR ON MEMORY AND AUDITORY PERCEPTION

Authors
  1. Fowler, B.
  2. White, P.L.
  3. Wright, G.R.
  4. Ackles, K.N.
Corporate Authors
Defence and Civil Inst of Environmental Medicine, Downsview ONT (CAN);York Univ, Toronto ONT (CAN) Dept of Psychology
Abstract
Three experiments were conducted to examine the effects of 35% N2O (nitrous oxide) on human memory and auditory perception. In Experiment I, dichotic listening performance was found to be impaired. Experiment II used the same technique but was controlled for attenuation of sound transmission in the middle ear. No impairment was found. The perceptual effect found in Experiment I was peripheral, not central, and N2O did not impair short-term memory (STM). Experiment III used one-trial free recall of a word list. The shapes of the serial position curves were interpreted as indicating that N2O impairs long-term memory (LTM) but not STM. Experiment III provided no evidence, using cued recall, that the LTM deficit was due to impaired retrieval. Comparing these results with those for compressed air led to the conclusion that both N2O and hyperbaric nitrogen display an identical pattern of effects. TRUNCATED
Report Number
79-X-9 — Research Paper
Date of publication
01 Jan 1980
Number of Pages
12
Reprinted from
Undersea Biomedical Research, vol 7, no 1, 1980, p 35-46
DSTKIM No
84-02108
CANDIS No
121498
Format(s):
Originator's fiche received by DSIS;Hardcopy

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