Applications of Medical xenon
 
Anesthesia by xenon
Xenon has been used as a general anesthetic, although it is expensive. Even so, anesthesia machines that can deliver xenon are about to appear on the Asian market. Two mechanisms for xenon anesthesia have been proposed. The first one involves the inhibition of the calcium ATPase pump—the mechanism cells use to remove calcium (Ca2+)—in the cell membrane of synapses. This results from a conformational change when xenon binds to nonpolar sites inside the protein. The second mechanism focuses on the non-specific interactions between the anesthetic and the lipid membrane.
Xenon has a minimum alveolar concentration (MAC) of 71%, making it 50% more potent than N2O as an anesthetic. Thus it can be used in concentrations with oxygen that have a lower risk of hypoxia. Unlike nitrous oxide (N2O), xenon is not a greenhouse gas and so it is also viewed as environmentally friendly. Because of the high cost of xenon, however, economic application will require a closed system so that the gas can be recycled, with the gas being appropriately filtered for contaminants between uses.

  The main result of the tests is that the KseMed® medicine is a new ecologically clean strong gas anesthetic, having neither common nor specific toxicity, and being well borne by the organism of humans and animals. KseMed® is one of the most prospective anesthetics of the XXI century.

According to the statistics, more than 300 operations under the xenon narcosis were done in various Russian healthcare establishments with excellent results. Xenon introduction in surgery has opened a new page in anesthesia. It became possible due to development of new unique Russian narcosis equipment, which has no analogs in the world.
Medical xenon KseMed®, medicine prescription

Medical xenon KseMed® can be used for inhalation narcosis during various surgery operations, painful manipulations and pain as well as other pathologic conditions healing. KseMed® is mostly prescribed for those patients, who have a high operational-anesthesiology risk or weak patients irrespective of their age. Due to its' indifference and absence of toxicity, KseMed® has no contraindications and is well borne by human organism. KseMed® potential consumers are those healthcare institutions, which use in their practice an inhalation narcosis and posses a respective anesthesia equipment and personnel.
 
Medical imaging
Gamma emission from the radioisotope 133Xe of xenon can be used to image the heart, lungs, and brain, for example, by means of single photon emission computed tomography. 133Xe has also been used to measure blood flow. Nuclei of two of the stable isotopes of xenon, 129Xe and 131Xe, have non-zero intrinsic angular momenta (nuclear spins). When mixed with alkali vapor and nitrogen and exposed to a laser beam of circularly-polarized light that is tuned to an absorption line of the alkali atoms, their nuclear spins can be aligned by a spin exchange process in which the alkali valence electrons are spin-polarized by the light and then transfer their polarization to the xenon nuclei via magnetic hyperfine coupling. Typically, pure rubidium metal, heated above 100 °C, is used to produce the alkali vapor. The resulting spin polarization of xenon nuclei can surpass 50% of its maximum possible value, greatly exceeding the equilibrium value dictated by the Boltzmann distribution (typically 0.001% of the maximum value at room temperature, even in the strongest magnets). Such non-equilibrium alignment of spins is a temporary condition, and is called hyper polarization.

Because a 129Xe nucleus has a spin of 1/2, and therefore a zero electric quadrupole moment, the 129Xe nucleus does not experience any quadrupolar interactions during collisions with other atoms, and thus its hyper polarization can be maintained for long periods of time even after the laser beam has been turned off and the alkali vapor removed by condensation on a room-temperature surface. The time it takes for a collection of spins to return to their equilibrium (Boltzmann) polarization is called the T1 relaxation time. For 129Xe it can range from several seconds for xenon atoms dissolved in blood to several hours in the gas phase and several days in deeply-frozen solid xenon. In contrast, 131Xe has a nuclear spin value of 3/2 and a nonzero quadrupole moment, and has T1 relaxation times in the millisecond and second ranges.Hyperpolarization renders 129Xe much more detectable via magnetic resonance imaging and has been used for studies of the lungs and other tissues. It can be used, for example, to trace the flow of gases within the lungs.

 
 
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