GERALD F. DiBONA, M.D.
Under steady-state conditions, urinary sodium excretion matches dietary sodium intake. Because extracellular fluid osmolality is tightly regulated, the quantity of sodium in the extracellular fluid determines the volume of this compartment. The left atrial volume receptor mechanism is an example of a neural mechanism of volume regulation. The left atrial mechanoreceptor, which functions as a sensor in the low-pressure vascular system, has a well-defined compliance relating intravascular volume to filling pressure and responds to changes in wall tension by discharging into afferent vagal fibers. These fibers have appropriate central nervous system representation whose related efferent neurohumoral mechanisms regulate thirst, renal excretion of water and sodium, and the redistribution of the extracellular fluid volume.
DiBONA GF. Neural Mechanisms of Volume Regulation. Ann Intern Med. ;98:750–752. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-98-5-750
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1983;98(5_Part_2):750-752.
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