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Chemistry of anaesthesia

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What is anaesthesia? Anaesthesia is the process of inducing partial or whole body unawareness done usually by the use of chemicals and for medical reasons.

What are some of the chemicals used in anaesthesia? Some of the chemicals used in anaesthesia include;

>Sevoflurane)(C4H3F70

>Isoflurane (C3H2F50)

>Desflurane (C3H2F60)

Most anaesthesia chemicals are usually combined with nitrous oxide (N2O).

Let us look at an example to better understand the chemistry of anesthesia;

Example

A gas mixture used for anaesthesia contains 2.1mol of oxygen O2 and 7.62mol of nitrous  oxide (N2O). The total pressure of the mixture is 192kPa

(i) What is the mole fraction of oxygen and nitrous oxide in the mixture of anaesthesia?

(ii) What is the partial pressures of oxygen and nitrous oxide in the mixture?

Solution

The mole fraction is given by;

XA = nA/nT

Where;

XA= mole fraction

nA = moles of A

nT = total moles in the mixture

Partial pressure = mole fraction × total pressure

(a) The mole fraction of oxygen is thus given by;

2.1mol/(2.1+7.62)mol = 0.21605

And the mole fraction of nitrous oxide is;

7.62mol/(2.1+7.62)mol = 0.7840

It is worth noting that since mole fraction is a ratio it thus has no units!

(a) The partial pressure of oxygen is;

=0.21605 × 192kPa = 41.4816kPa

The partial pressure of nitrous oxide is;

= 0.7840 × 192kPa = 150.528kPa

The featured image is Courtney of depositphotos.com.

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