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Sympathetic components of the Genito-femoral and obturator nerves in the rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta).

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SYMPATHETIC COlIPONENTS O F THE GENITOFEMORAL AND OUTURATOlZ NEBVliiS IiS THE
RHESTTS YONKEY (M-ACACA XULA'I'TA)
8. ZUCKERMAN A E U H. S. B U R R
Departnient of Physiology and S e c t i m o f Netiro-anatomy, Department of Anatomy,
Pale U:,airersitg School of Medicine
T\YO FIGURES
Since the pioneer work 01 Gaskell (1883), aiid Langley
(1894) it has been generally admitted that, in spite of the
variability iii the orgaiiizatioii of the sympathetic iiervous
system, a cliaracteristic patter11 may be recognized. This
has been recently reaffirriiecl by Woollard ( '26 a, '26 b arid '33)
in a study of the iiiriervation of blood vessels; lie has presented evidence that vaso-constrictor aiid vaso-dilator impulses to the vessels of the limbs are coiiveyecl almost exclusivelF bv fibers travcrsiiig the peripheral nerves. These
fibers must of necessity pass from the sympathetic c h i n t o
the somatic nerve throiqh the rami communicantes. The on]:exception t o the abore gciieralization is the aorta and the
roots of its major branches. These vessels are supplied directly from the iierre plexuses surrounding the aorta.
A variant of the above arrangemciit has recently heen discovered by one of us dnriiig the coarse of routine dissections
of tlie rliesiis monkey. By cbaiicc there was discovered R definite liranch of the fifth lumbar s p q i a t h e t i c ganglion which
traversed tlie fascia1 plane and close to the pelvic brim sent
a branch t o join the obtarator nerve and a sceond branch t o
be distributed to the tldoerititia of the extcriial iliac artery
(fig. 1). The genito-femord, with wliicli it might have been
coiif~mxl,wab clearly indica
as a scparate trunk.
33
THE AVATOMICAL BECORD, T O T .
61, NO. 1
54
S. ZLTCIIETIMAN A N D H. S . BURR
Following the original discovery, successive clissections
uncovered an interesting
series of variations from tlie
normal to this particular extreme. It has loiig beru
known that both the genitof(1moral and obturator nerves
contain fibers wliidi a r e ultimately clistrihted to the ~.~;alls
of blood vessels. These fibers
reach the nerves from the
sympathetic c*liain via the
m m i (fig. 2 A ) . In a number
of iiistxnces the simplest varinbiori from the normal was
shown to he ail additioiial
ramus from the fifth lumbar
sympathetic ganglion joining
the genito-femoral some distance peripheral to the emergence of the nerve froin
the psoas muscle. Sometimes
single, this connection may,
on occasion, be double. T t is
clear that this arrangement
con sti tut es a direct con tinnatioii of the sympathetic
iiervous system to tlie genitofemoral iicrve. A similar
arraiigement is to be f o a n d
in association with the obturator nerve. Herr (fig. 2 B)
again clefinite branches h a r e
been traced froin the fiflh 01Fig. 1 Pholograph of the left side of a disseclion nf n rlicsus mon1rt.y s h o w i n g tl:e
aberrant branrh nf thc fifth sympathetic gangiion. P, pnoas muscle : C , genito-femoral
nerve: 8, branch of fifth sympathetic! ganglion supplying the advrntitia of the extrrnal
iliac artery ( I ) and anastoniosiiig with the oliturator n e n c (0).
sixth lumbar. sympathetic ganglion to the ohturatoi- nerve.
This suggests that sympathetic commuiiicatioii with tlie
peripheral nerve may owur in addition t o thc usiial rami communicantes. Thcse dissections iriclicatc very clearly that vascular branches from the sympathetic chain map be distributed
to the genito-fenioral and ohtuuator iierves by trunks addi-
N.OBTURJXTORIUS
Fig. 2 A. ,4 diagram rctlrawri from H a i t m a n a n d Stmus, showing thc normal
relations betwccri the sympathetic. chain and t h e lunihnr and sacral plcxuscs.
B. il variation froin the normal, sliouiiig extra branches from th e fifth sympathetic
ganglion t o the gcnito femoral and ohturator nerves. (". A diagramatic recon
strurtion of the relationships shown in the photograph of figure 1.
tioiial t o thc rami communicantes. It is not surprising, therefore, to firid in a number of iiistances that these vascular
braiichcs, instcad of running with cert ain somatic braiiches of
the lumbar plexus, reach their ultimate destination directly,
without traversing any of the liimhar somatic nerves. It is
interesting t o note that all of these aberrant trunks take origin
from the fifth lumbar sympathetic ganglion, that they may
join a ) tlie gcnito-femoral or b ) the obturtator or c) pass
directly to the periphery without joining either the genitofemoral or the ohturator (fig. 2 C).
These findings are another demonstration of a well known
fact that a growing axis cylinder may follour any one of a
number of different paths t o reach its ultimate destination.
COTCLUSION
Dissections of the rliesus monkey have demonstrated that
thc vascular branches of the lumbar sympathetic chair1 ma>reach blie walls of tlie perilheral blood vessels directly witliout joining or rnriniiig v i t h somatic nerves. These, in turn,
may receive sympathetic contributions directly, as well a s hy
w a ~of
- the mini commuiiicaiites of thc spinal roots from which
they take origin.
LITERATURE CITED
A Iiiblogrxphy
Ha~mnra~,
C'. G.,
%'OOLLA4RD,
( 3 0 1
frilly this field may b e found i n thc followjng papers:
AND %I-. I,. h t 4 ~ 5 JR.
,
1933 Thc Anatonly of the Rhcsus
Monkey. Williams &- Wilkina, Baltimore.
H. H., AND R. E. NORRISH 1083 The aiiatoriiy of the peripheral
sympathetic ~ i c n o u sSJ btem. British. .T. of Surgrry, vol. 21, 110. 81,
Ju1.y.
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femoral, monkey, rhesus, nerve, components, mulatta, macaca, sympathetic, genito, obturator
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