The psychomotor effects of laughing gas

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is increasingly being encountered by the Dutch Police at traffic accident scenes. However, the police struggles to deal with this rising phenomenon. There is no research about the severity and duration of the effects of recreational nitrous oxide use on driving performance. Also, there is currently no established method for demonstrating that a driver recently used nitrous oxide.

That’s whey we launched this police funded experimental pilot study in collaboration with the Leiden University Medical Center and the Dutch institute for applied natural sciences. With this study, we want to determine the severity and duration of driving impairment after a typical recreational dose of nitrous oxide. Also, we want to find out if a breathalyzer test for nitrous oxide is possible.

Have you ever used nitrous oxide recreationally? If so, consider participating in our study! The study is being performed at the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden!

In a nutshell, study participation comprises the following steps:

  1. Short screening interview (zoom/teams/whatsapp).
  2. Short follow-up meeting for providing informed consent (zoom/teams/whatsapp).
  3. Completing a medical questionnaire.
  4. A training visit to explain and practice all test procedures.
  5. A series of 3 testing sessions during which laughing gas and/or placebo will be inhaled and a series of computer tasks are completed.

The planning of visits will be done flexibly on a case-by-case basis, depending on your availability. However, full participation (i.e. from informed consent to completion) should be completed within a maximum time span of 24 weeks. Within this period, you will invest a total of 12 hours divided over the training and testing sessions. A compensation of €120 is provided for full participation.

Interested? Contact or leave your contact details here!