Toxicity of Impurities
Present day manufacturers evidence considerable awareness in the problem of toxic impurities in anesthetic drugs. Rigid standards are set by the Food and Drug Administration and are carefully followed by the manufacturer. Fortunately, most impurities are harmless contaminants, or represent specific additives to the anesthetic, whose only disadvantage is to slightly dilute the agent. On the other hand, occasional toxic impurities are formed as by-products of the manufacturing process, and these may be difficult to remove. In addition, hazardous impurities may form during storage of the anesthetic, or appear after the container is opened and exposed to light, heat, moisture, or air. A recent report by Chenoweth and Brewer (1968) calls attention to a number of important toxic impurities and breakdown products found in anesthetics.
KeywordsNitrous Oxide Ethyl Alcohol Nitrogen Dioxide Hydrogen Fluoride Divinyl Ether
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