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Edmond emergency room using nitrous oxide to alleviate fear, pain in pediatric patients

EDMOND, Okla. (KFOR) – It can be a terrifying experience to be rushed to an emergency room, especially for children.

Now, a local emergency room is working to make sure that children receive the necessary treatment without fear.

The emergency department at INTEGRIS Health Edmond is implementing a pediatric pilot program designed to take away some of the fear by alleviating pain.

“The solution is simple really,” said Guy Peterson, D.O., the medical director of the INTEGRIS Health Edmond emergency department. “Earlier this year, we decided to start using nitrous oxide, or ‘laughing gas,’ on our younger patients – and the results have been even better than expected. Once you take away the pain, the child is more at ease and much more cooperative.”

Organizers say if a child’s pain is managed, their anxiety decreases, which allows the medical staff to complete procedures quickly and effectively.

The Donehue family says the nitrous oxide helped their 4-year-old son, Sutton, in August.

“Sutton was freaking out. We thought for sure we were going to have to physically hold him down to get the six stitches he needed,” remembers Sutton’s mother Kindall Donehue. “But once they put the nitrous oxide on him, he just started laughing. He giggled through the entire procedure which made everyone in the room start laughing. It was great.”

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