In 1919, three medical officers of the United States Army, Wegeforth, Ayer and Essick,1 using dogs, worked out the anatomic relations of the cistern cerebromedullaris. The following year, one of them, Ayer2 described the first clinical application of the use of the cistern for obtaining cerebrospinal fluid. Seven years previously Dixon and Halliburton3 had reported the accessibility of the cisterna magna in the dog.
In 1890, Quinke presented his classic work on the use of lumbar puncture as well as the measurement of cerebrospinal fluid pressure by the manometer. Since the clinical application of cistern puncture in 1920, its use has increased markedly as a diagnostic aid and means of direct application of therapy.
On sagittal section the cisterna magna is triangular in shape and is the largest of the subarachnoid spaces. It lies between the cerebellum and the medulla. Superiorly it communicates with the fourth ventricle
KUTSCHER GW. CISTERN PUNCTURE IN INFANTS: OBSERVATIONS IN ONE HUNDRED CASES. Am J Dis Child. 1931;42(6):1428–1438. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1931.01940190151013
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