Cerebral hemodynamic response to mental activation in normo- and hypercapnia.
Changes of regional cerebral blood flow from rest to mental activation by a visually presented spatial reasoning test were measured during normo- and hypercapnia in 10 healthy subjects. Hypercapnia, elicited by inhalation of 6% CO2, resulted in similar flow increases in all 32 cortical regions measured. Increases of flow during testing were seen in post-central regions of the brain whether the resting level was augmented by hypercapnia or not. The results show that an elevated local functional level in the cortex causes an automatic local vasodilatory response which is totally independent of the basal level of perfusion and availability of metabolic substrates.
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