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CHAPTER III. THE RHYTHMICALLY DISCHARGING CENTRES; AND THE EFFECTS
OF DRUGS THEREUPON. The influence of the nervous system upon the
different portions of the body, as muscular movement, secretion,
etc., is, according to Hermann, as yet unknown, except in so far as
we can regard the subject from a merely mechanical point of view.
So regarded the nervous system is a "liberating force," i. e., a
force which leads to a conversion of a certain amount of potential
into kinetic energy. He says further: " An infinitely small
liberating force may liberate large quantities of kinetic energy,
and it is exceedingly probable that even the liberating forces of
the nervous system, if measured as forces, would be very small in
amount, and consequently that the chemical changes necessary to
their evolution, as to that of all the other forces of the
organism, are of small magnitude." In consequence of the small
amount of chemical change involved in the decomposition of the
nerve-cells by which this liberating force is evolved, little as
yet is known about the how of this action. That some chemical
change is essential is easily comprehensible. Blood containing
oxygen is absolutely necessary to this chemical change, but the
matter is somewhat complex, as we shall shortly see. The nervous
centres with which the present inquiry is engaged are those motor
centres which govern the circulation and the respiration, and which
discharge, or explode rhythmically, and send out efferent impulses
which set up the requisite muscular actions. These centres exist
for the circulation essentially in the ganglia of the heart, though
in intimate connection with other parts, especially the vaso-motor
centre in the medulla oblongata. For the respiration, as we shall
shortly see, in the medulla solely; from whic...
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|Country of origin:
John Milner Fothergill
||246 x 189 x 2mm (L x W x T)
||Paperback - Trade
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