Sao Paulo Medical Journal
versão impressa ISSN 1516-3180
AMORIM, Dalmo de Souza e MARIN NETO, José Antonio. Functional alterations of the autonomic nervous system in Chagas' heart disease. Sao Paulo Med. J. [online]. 1995, vol.113, n.2, pp. 772-784. ISSN 1516-3180. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-31801995000200007.
Several independent pathological studies in experimental models and in human beings showed conspicuous autonomic denervation in Chagas' disease. In spite of the inherently complex structural organization of the autonomic nervous system, the parasympathetic and sympathetic divisions are involved, as shown by many functional studies. Hence, Chagas' disease represents a unique model of impairment of the autonomic control of the heart, in absence of the nonspecific effects of cardiac failure. An important limitation of the studies thus far carried out is the lack of a better knowledge of the molecular biology characteristics of different strains of T. cruzi. This could explain some geographical discrepancies found in the clinical behaviour of Chagas' disease, and contribute to a better understanding of its pathophysiology.
Palavras-chave : Chagas' disease; Autonomic nervous system.