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Auton Neurosci. 2013 Apr;175(1-2):26-37. doi: 10.1016/j.autneu.2013.02.006. Epub 2013 Mar 13.

Cardiorespiratory coupling in health and disease.

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Center for Integrative Brain Research, Seattle Children's Research Institute, Seattle, WA 98101, USA.


Cardiac and respiratory activities are intricately linked both functionally as well as anatomically through highly overlapping brainstem networks controlling these autonomic physiologies that are essential for survival. Cardiorespiratory coupling (CRC) has many potential benefits creating synergies that promote healthy physiology. However, when such coupling deteriorates autonomic dysautonomia may ensue. Unfortunately there is still an incomplete mechanistic understanding of both normal and pathophysiological interactions that respectively give rise to CRC and cardiorespiratory dysautonomia. Moreover, there is also a need for better quantitative methods to assess CRC. This review addresses the current understanding of CRC by discussing: (1) the neurobiological basis of respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA); (2) various disease states involving cardiorespiratory dysautonomia; and (3) methodologies measuring heart rate variability and RSA.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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