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January 4, 1971

Aerosols and Aerosol Propellants in Asthma

JAMA. 1971;215(1):118-119. doi:10.1001/jama.1971.03180140082022

To the Editor.—  The inspired mixture of fluorocarbon may contribute to a hypoxic state in the experimental animal not only by an impediment to diffusion of oxygen through the dense inert gaseous medium prevailing in the airway but also by altering the ventilation perfusion relationships. Chouteau and co-workers1,2 in France have observed the "hypoxic crisis" in goats exposed to argon, nitrogen, and helium in a diving chamber with simulated depths up to 3,000 feet. Some of the animals exhibited a phenomenon of sudden collapse associated with abnormal neurological activity even though in each instance the oxygen tension (Po2) was maintained at the equivalent level of air at the surface. When untoward neurologic signs did occur, raising the inspired Po2 led to a reversal of the neurologic deficit and the animals then behaved normally to inspection.Concerning the potential danger of pressurized aerosol spray, the victim of an