Brain Ischemia pp 235-236 | Cite as

Prefatory Comments

  • Louis R. Caplan


The job of the cerebral vascular system is to deliver sufficient fuel and metabolites to meet the metabolic needs of all parts of the brain. Clearly, lack of blood flow - ischemia - is the underlying mechanism of brain infarctions: infarction accounts for 80% of all strokes. The metabolic needs of different brain regions vary, and demand also depends on the level of metabolic activity of a given area. Roy and Sherrington (1890) (Friedland and Iadecola 1991) first studied the ability of the vascular system to change local regional blood flow in response to changes in neuronal activity. More recently, PET scan studies have confirmed that increased activity and glucose metabolism in a local region is usually accompanied by increased regional blood flow to that region.


Blood Flow Single Photon Emission Compute Tomography Cerebral Blood Flow Intracranial Pressure Regional Blood Flow 
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  1. Friedland RP, Iadecola C (1991) Roy and Sherrington (1890) A centennial re-examination of, ’On the regulation of the blood supply of the brain’. Neurology 41: 10–14Google Scholar
  2. Jafar JJ, Crowell RM (1987) Focal ischemic thresholds. In: Wood JH (ed) Cerebral blood flow. McGraw-Hill Book Co, New York, pp 449–457Google Scholar
  3. Roy CS, Sherrington C (1890) On the regulation of blood supply to the brain. J Physiol 11: 85–108PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Louis R. Caplan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeurologyNew England Medical Center HospitalsBostonUSA

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