Article Index

Dysfunction in the autonomic nervous system

The autonomic nervous system is divided into two segments: the sympathetic and parasympa­thetic systems. The sympathetic system mobi­lizes the flight or fight response; adrenalin is produced and blood is sent to the muscles and brain.

The parasympathetic system, on the other hand, puts the body into a state of relax­ation, allowing the body to recuperate and restore itself. Dr. Klimas stated that in ME/CFS patients the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems are not in proper balance with each other.

The regulation of blood pressure by these systems is often dysfunctional. The evidence for this has come from research at Johns Hopkins (Drs. Calkins, Rowe et al) and from the blood volume/cell studies by Drs. Bell and Streeten.