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Bernoulli’s principle applied to brain fluids: intracranial pressure does not drive cerebral perfusion or CSF flow

Schmidt, Eric and Ros, Maxime and Moyse, Emmanuel and Lorthois, Sylvie and Swider, Pascal Bernoulli’s principle applied to brain fluids: intracranial pressure does not drive cerebral perfusion or CSF flow. (2016) In: Intracranial Pressure and Brain Monitoring XV. (Acta Neurochirurgica Supplement). Springer, Cham, 107-111. ISBN 978-3-319-22532-6

(Document in English)

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-22533-3_21


In line with the first law of thermodynamics, Bernoulli's principle states that the total energy in a fluid is the same at all points. We applied Bernoulli's principle to understand the relationship between intracranial pressure (ICP) and intracranial fluids. We analyzed simple fluid physics along a tube to describe the interplay between pressure and velocity. Bernoulli's equation demonstrates that a fluid does not flow along a gradient of pressure or velocity; a fluid flows along a gradient of energy from a high-energy region to a low-energy region. A fluid can even flow against a pressure gradient or a velocity gradient. Pressure and velocity represent part of the total energy. Cerebral blood perfusion is not driven by pressure but by energy: the blood flows from high-energy to lower-energy regions. Hydrocephalus is related to increased cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) resistance (i.e., energy transfer) at various points. Identification of the energy transfer within the CSF circuit is important in understanding and treating CSF-related disorders. Bernoulli's principle is not an abstract concept far from clinical practice. We should be aware that pressure is easy to measure, but it does not induce resumption of fluid flow. Even at the bedside, energy is the key to understanding ICP and fluid dynamics.

Item Type:Book Section
Additional Information:Thanks to Springer editor. The original PDF of the article can be found at https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-3-319-22533-3_21
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier - UT3 (FRANCE)
Other partners > Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Toulouse - CHU Toulouse (FRANCE)
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Deposited On:16 May 2018 14:30

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