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February 1937

RELATION OF THE CAROTID SINUS TO THE AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM AND THE NEUROSES

Author Affiliations

CINCINNATI; CHICAGO; BOSTON

From the Thorndike Memorial Laboratory; the Second and Fourth Medical Services (Harvard); the Boston City Hospital, and the Department of Medicine, the Harvard University Medical School, Boston.

Arch NeurPsych. 1937;37(2):365-384. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1937.02260140151008
Abstract

Since the pioneer work of Hering1 in 1926 a mass of experimental data has accumulated concerning the function of the carotid sinus in animals. The significance of the carotid sinus mechanism in man, particularly as regards certain abnormal bodily states, has, however, not been duly appreciated in the United States until recently. One of us (S. W.) and Baker2 reported the cases of a series of fifteen patients, all of whom complained of attacks of unconsciousness, with or without convulsions, which were caused by a hypersensitive carotid sinus reflex. In a recent publication we3 reported studies of thirty-two additional patients suffering from syncopal attacks of carotid sinus origin. This syndrome is reflex in nature, and the reflex pathways are parts of the autonomic nervous system. In other reports4 we presented evidence of the nature of other types of reflex syncope, such as vasovagal, vagovagal and oculocardiac

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