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Arch Cardiol Mex. 2009 Dec;79 Suppl 2:109-16.

[Neural control of the peripheral circulation and blood pressure].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

  • 1Laboratorio de Neurofisiología Clinica, Departamento de Neurología y Psiquiatría, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Médicas y Nutrición Salvador Zubirán, México, D. F.


In the XIX century Claude Bernard discovered the action of the nervous system on the peripheral circulation. In the first half of the XX century Ewald Hering discovered the baro-receptor and the reflex control of the heart rate and blood pressure. Cowley and Guyton demonstrated that sino-aortic denervation induces persistent changes in the blood pressure in the dog. The autonomic nervous system is mainly responsible for the regulation of the circulation and blood pressure in the short term on a beat to beat basis. It controls the vasomotor tone, the heart rate and the cardiac output. With the advent of non invasive methods that measure the blood pressure on a beat to beat basis (Finapres) and with the methods of measurement of the variability of the blood pressure in the frequency domain (spectral analysis) we can currently measure many variables including heart rate, blood pressure, stroke volume, peripheral resistances and the baroreceptor sensitivity and make some inferences about their control mechanisms. These variables can be measured at rest in the supine position, standing up, during rhythmic breathing and during the Valsalva maneuver. In this article we present a review of the neural control of the blood pressure and heart rate.

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