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May 22, 1915


JAMA. 1915;LXIV(21):1758-1763. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.25710470006014


CIRCULATORY DEPRESSANTS  It is well known that, though the blood-pressure undergoes frequent minor changes, it is under the control of a coordinated mechanism which tends to maintain a close approximation to a certain level from day to day during health. Even after the administration of drugs which affect the distribution of the blood, any considerable change in blood-pressure is usually only fleeting. When the vessels of the splanchnic region are constricted, those of the periphery usually undergo a compensating dilatation; if the constriction of the splanchnic vessels is sufficient to cause a rise of blood-pressure, the heart is commonly slowed, so that the pressure in the large arteries tends strongly to remain constant.The blood-pressure may be lowered by diminishing the amount of blood in the circulation; by dilating the vessels, or by diminishing the activity of the heart by decreasing either its force or its rate.Venesection, or

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