Psychosomatische Aspekte aus psychophysiologischer Sicht

  • W. Pöldinger
Conference paper


Psychosomatic medicine can be approached from several points of view; one of them is the psychophysiological approach. This contribution places particular emphasis on reticular formation. The reticular formation is fed by specific impulses and enervates the brain to a higher level of activation by very fast unspecific impulses. In a phylogenetic perspective this higher level of activation was the antecedent of fight and flight.

We distinguish between:
  1. 1)

    a cortical arousal reaction in the sense of a waking reaction;

  2. 2)

    the affective arousal reaction which generally evokes anxiety;

  3. 3)

    the vegetative arousal reaction which raises the blood pressure and herewith the activity readiness; and

  4. 4)

    the spinal arousal reaction which raises the muscular activity via descending pathways to the spinal cord. When this reaction occurs permanently, rather than on command, it leads to an increased muscle tension, which together with other reactions can easily become one of the prerequisites for a generalized tendomyopathia.



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Copyright information

© Dr. Dietrich Steinkopff Verlag, GmbH & Co. KG, Darmstadt 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Pöldinger
    • 1
  1. 1.Psychiatrischen Universitätsklinik BaselBaselSwitzerland

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