Laboratory evaluation of pediatric autonomic disorders

Kuntz, N. L.; Patwari, P. P.

Semin Pediatr Neurol. 2013 Mar 8; 20(1):35-43


The autonomic nervous system controls a variety of fundamental physiological processes in the human body including regulation of breathing, heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, and gastrointestinal motility. Although, methods of testing autonomic function have been developed and normative data have been collected in adults, development of child-friendly testing and the field of pediatric autonomic medicine is just beginning. These noninvasive testing methods serve to identify changes in autonomic functioning and to clarify whether dysfunction is isolated or crosses into multiple systems. Methods for testing cardiovagal, adrenergic, sudomotor, pupillary, enteric, and bladder function need to be refined and made more child friendly at the same time that age and gender appropriate normative values are developed for children.

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