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donofitaly 09-13-2010 12:50 PM

Difference between rhythm and regularity of breathing.
Sorry if this question seems stupid but i am not really understanding the difference easily. It would be nice if someone could clarify this point by some mnemonic or good analogy.

I fail to understand the difference between the rhythm control and regularity control of breathing. As Kaplan Physio states that Medulla provides the inherent rhythm for breathing while Pons contributes by providing the regularity of breathing.

Any help will be much appreciated. Thanks in advance. :)

good_boy_1234 09-13-2010 01:03 PM

You can see "M" in both words. I think with that you will never forget them.
But both of us need someone who will clarify the difference :)

rasheed 09-13-2010 01:08 PM

This is a low yield topic but let me tell you what I understand about it.

The Medulla provides the inherent rhythm which means the drive for respiration even without thinking about it. This is actually the respiratory center and if you have lesion in it you'll have central respiratory failure.
The Pons controls the pattern (like how long is the inspiration and how long is the expiration and the transitioning in between them). A lesion may not necessarily cause respiratory failure it will cause an abnormal pattern of breathing. You will lose the fine tuning but the main drive is still there in the medulla.

The pons has to centers:
Apneustic center, if this activated then you'll have prolonged deep inspirations with short expiratory phases but this is always under inhibition by the above pneumotaxic center.

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