Psych M.D. - Central Nervous System (CNS)


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Term: Central Nervous System (CNS)
Definition (Myers): the brain and the spinal cord. (pg.65)
Definition (alternative): The central nervous system is that part of the nervous system that consists of the brain and spinal cord. The central nervous system (CNS) is one of the two major divisions of the nervous system. The other is the peripheral nervous system (PNS) which is outside the brain and spinal cord. The peripheral nervous system (PNS) connects the central nervous system (CNS) to sensory organs (such as the eye and ear), other organs of the body, muscles, blood vessels and glands. The peripheral nerves include the 12 cranial nerves, the spinal nerves and roots, and what are called the autonomic nerves that are concerned specifically with the regulation of the heart muscle, the muscles in blood vessel walls, and glands. *
Contextual explanation: Central Nervous System enables our humanity, thinking, feeling and acting. The central nervous system's spinal cord is an information highway connecting the peripheral nervous system to the brain. Reflexes, our automatic responses to stimuli, illustrate the spinal cord's work. Another such pathway enables the pain reflex.

Related terms and concepts: Nervous System, Peripheral Nervous System
Central Nervous System (CNS) - The Neuron

Related websites: Central Nervous System, Central Nervous System Overview, The Human Nervous System
Edited by: Jessica



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