pharmachology question

  1. I have read about the nervous system and i kind of understand but i am still very confuse about how the parasympathetic and sympathetic system works..can any one give an example of each?
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    About mace0052243

    Joined: Mar '13; Posts: 1


  3. by   perioddrama
    Google is your friend. Also, searching this forum is your friend.

    Here's some threads: Why can't I get it!

    ANS Parasympathetic/Sympathetic question

    nursing student needs help with pharmacology911!
  4. by   Esme12
  5. by   strawberryluv
    Parasympathetic --> Think, CALM. This is the system that you go through every day, eating, peeing, resting, etc.

    Sympathetic ---> Fight or Flight. Think RUN FROM THE BEAR in the WOODS. This is the system that alerts all your senses, pupils dilate, heart speeds up from fear or to pump blood towards the extremities in preparation to run for your life or get mulled via bear. It also includes dry mouth, low gastric motility, etc.
  6. by   ♪♫ in my ♥
    Keep in mind:

    The parasympathetic system is tonic... running all the time. The sympathetic system goes on and off in bursts to overcome the para.

    The para offers fine control over individual organs and tissues... the symp tends to flip everything into overdrive

    The para is your minute-by-minute controller... the symp is there to save your butt from jngo91's bear

    The para is kind of staid and boring, the symp is exciting and flambouyant.

    The para wears plaid and corduory, the symp wears neon colors and cocktail dresses.

    The para dances the waltz, the symp goes Gagnam style.

    The para sips wine, the symp shoots meth

    The para is the shy wall-flower at the dance, the symp is screaming, "look at me" while stripping off her clothes...

    Or, just read jngo91's concise summary...

    The symp helps move blood to the vital tissues (muscle), opens up the tubes to get air in, dumps fuel (glucose) into the system, shuts down the nonessential systems (you can pee later), and heightens your senses (open up those pupils to ever bit of light...)...
  7. by   charli_appleRN
    parasympathetic= rest and digest

    sympathetic=fight or flight
  8. by   vintagemother
    Quote from charli_apple
    parasympathetic= rest and digest

    sympathetic=fight or flight
    I say to myself that the sympathetic system has sympathy for me when I need to either fight or flight.

    Think about what happens when you need to fight or flight...your heart beats faster so u can get more blood to your body, your bronchioles dilate to allow for passages oxygen through your body. Your blood vessels near skin dilate: think about how you feel cool and get goosebumps when you are scared or afraid.

    In the opposite manner, the parasympathetic system is all about resting and digesting. The word choline means rest, so cholinergic meds assist this system.

    When I think of my medications, (I'm taking pharm right now, also) I visualize the scene in pulp fiction where the woman takes the depressant drug, gets a cool high then passes out. But the guy comes in, gives her a shot of l, I'm thinking adrenalin or epinephrine or something that works on sympathetic system and she wakes up startled.

    Sympathetic system does the following:
    Taken from

    Increase in heart rate and blood pressure
    Dilated pupils
    Constriction of veins in the skin, which causes the chilly sensation often associated with fear
    Increased blood glucose
    Tensing of muscles and goose bumps
    Relaxation of smooth muscles
    Shutting down of nonessential systems such as digestion and the immune system
    Difficulty concentrating on small tasks
    Once the threat diminishes, the body releases the hormone cortisol to calm itself back down to normal. The entire fight-or-flight cycle is part of a defense mechanism that has developed over thousands of years. Without it, one of your direct ancestors may not have been able to defend themselves or escape from predators or enemies.

    HTH !
  9. by   eva123
    My question is whether you are confused over the differences in the two systems or the drugs to mimic or block them, seeing as how you listed it as a pharmacology question.