Trigeminocardiac reflex: The current clinical and physiological knowledge

Tumul Chowdhury, David Mendelowith, Eugene Golanov, Toma Spiriev, Belachew Arasho, Nora Sandu, Pooyan Sadr-Eshkevari, Cyrill Meuwly, Bernhard Schaller

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

108 Scopus citations


The trigeminocardiac reflex (TCR) is defined as the sudden onset of parasympathetic dysrhythmia, sympathetic hypotension, apnea, or gastric hypermotility during stimulation of any of the sensory branches of the trigeminal nerve. Clinically, the TCR has been reported in all the surgical procedures in which a structure innervated by the trigeminal nerve is involved. Although, there is an abundant literature with reports of incidences and risk factors of the TCR; the physiological significance and function of this brainstem reflex has not yet been fully elucidated. In addition, there are complexities within the TCR that requires examination and clarification. There is also a growing need to discuss its cellular mechanism and functional consequences. Therefore, the current review provides an updated examination of the TCR with a particular focus on the mechanisms and diverse nature of the TCR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)136-147
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 27 2015


  • autonomous nerve system
  • brainstem reflex
  • central
  • chronic
  • peripheral
  • skull-base surgery
  • trigeminocardiac reflex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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