Xenon gas has recently shown promising results in treating a brain injury, particularly in infants. Newborns may suffer a brain injury during birth due to trauma to the child’s head. Neglect, irresponsibility, or poor decisions on behalf of the physician delivering the child, or any situation that disrupts the flow of oxygen and blood to the infant’s brain are other circumstances that may lead to a traumatic brain injury.
While doctors use various methods and medications to try to reverse the effects of brain injury, the trauma may be temporary or it may cause lifelong disabilities. Currently, British researchers have used Xenon gas to treat brain injury, and they have been noting promising results.
About Xenon Gas
Xenon gas is found in miniscule amounts in the atmosphere. It exists as a tasteless, odorless, colorless, noncombustible substance. It is extremely expensive to single out and procure this non-toxic gas. Xenon has been used as a general anesthetic for more than 50 years and studies show that patients who receive it as an anesthetic tend to experience a fewer number of side effects compared to individuals who received other commonly used treatments.
In England, an infant was suffering from oxygen deprivation and the parents agreed to allow their newborn to receive a Xenon gas inhalation therapy in combination with hypothermia as part of an experimental program. They had hoped that this treatment would prevent or reverse the possible brain damage. A week after the treatment, the infant showed significant improvement and did not experience any adverse effects from the gas. While this was only one successful test on a human patient, scientists and doctors are hoping to begin utilizing the treatment for other infants who have experienced trauma during their birth.
Special respiration devices are currently being developed to effectively deliver Xenon gas for therapy. There are not many devices in existence, but the machines have received approval for testing and use. They are built to deliver the appropriate doses for different lengths of time without leaking the valuable gas back into the atmosphere.
Although Xenon gas therapy proved effective in an infant, the treatment requires many more years of research before doctors can draw a conclusion about success for other brain injury patients.
Over one million individuals experience a traumatic brain injury annually, just in the United States alone. Motor vehicle accidents, falls, and sports-related situations are the main causes for these injuries. Brain trauma also causes 50,000 to die annually, while many others suffer permanent disabilities. Xenon gas therapy, when combined with hypothermia, has great potential to save and improve the quality of life for patients suffering from a traumatic brain injury.
If you or someone you love has experienced a traumatic brain injury, contact our office for a free case evaluation and consultation. Our caring, experienced attorneys can assist you in gaining financial compensation for medical expenses or loss of employment because of your injuries.