The author has, on a number of previous occasions, suggested that the central nervous system may play an important role in the etiology of hypertension. More specifically, he has hypothesized that essential hypertension represents an adaptive response to increased cerebral vascular resistance analogous to the hypertension induced by renal ischemia. He now presents a detailed elaboration of this hypothesis, submits it to a systematic analysis, and tests it by an examination of a broad range of evidence drawn from clinical experience, postmortem studies, and experimental work.
Neurologists will be interested not only in the general subject but in the material drawn from their field going back to Cushing's observations on the circulatory effects of an acute increase of intracranial pressure. The author makes considerable use of the familiar data collected by Schmidt, Kety, and others on the cerebral circulation, and also of the extensive literature which has accumulated in recent