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Neurosci Behav Physiol. 2009 May;39(4):377-81. doi: 10.1007/s11055-009-9140-8. Epub 2009 Apr 2.

Slow-wave oscillations in the craniosacral space: a hemoliquorodynamic concept of origination.

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I. M. Sechenov Institute of Evolutionary Physiological and Biochemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, 44. M. Torez Prospekt, 194223, St. Petersburg, Russia.


The mechanism of formation of rhythmic, slow-wave oscillations in the craniospinal cavity were studied. Synchronous bioimpedance traces were made of the head and lumbosacral part of the spine in five healthy young subjects at rest and during voluntary breath-holding; these reflect changes in the ratios of blood and CSF volumes in these parts of the craniospinal space. Computer amplitude-frequency and spectral analysis of the data (Macintosh G-4, Chart-5.2) demonstrated slow (6-12 cycles/min) and rapid (pulsatile) oscillations in different directions in the cranial and lumbosacral areas. These data suggested a hemoliquorodynamic hypothesis for the craniosacral rhythm. The pulsatile and slow-wave oscillations of cerebrovascular tone and intracranial pressure evidently initiate to-and-fro displacements of the CSF in the caudal direction. The associated tonic contractions of the musculature of the lumbar part of the spine and the mobility of the sacrum are detected manually as the craniosacral rhythm.

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