The brain tracks PaC02

because endogenous carbon dioxide and water and heat and energy [produced by the cells of the body] are KEY to body temperature and enzyme function and correct protein folding due to acid base balance needed.

pH and endogenous C02 control systems are very complex and difficult to understand and hard to measure continuously. We have a lot to learn about how such factors affect mental function; but all acid base imbalances affect mental status, some reversibly. Yet no one looks at the acid base status of patients with mental confusion seen in neurological and neuropsychiatric syndromes. Why???

Why?? Paula and I do not understand why this is not an important part of research on the possible causes of significant mood, cognitive and motor dysfunction. It is likely that different patterns of mood and cognitive and motor dysfunction are due to different kinds of problems with acid base balance. It is also likely that different patterns of respiratory rates , blood pressure, heart rates and body temperature at rest will help researchers to understand which chemical processes in the body are being affected.

This should be an active area of mental illness research and of neurological illness research but it is not; ……..too complicated perhaps? Not really. This stuff is taught in all introduction to chemistry courses and all doctors, even psychiatrists and neurologists should know this. For a refresher lesson go to the following website;

Acid base disturbances are most likely the reason for misfolded proteins found in the brain.

Acid base disturbances are most likely why external substances [recreational drugs and alcohol] may be helpful to certain cellular chemical processes in the short term, even if their long term effects on the body are not good. Learning more about these chemical interactions in the cells will certainly allow us to understand drug dependence in a more scientific manner.

With every new stage of development and skeletal growth, from birth to old age, especially if accompanied by major hormonal changes, there is a risk that metabolism may not work completely as it should because of internal injury and physical and mechanical stressors. Impaired metabolism may lead to illness or further impairment in cell metabolism. Some metabolic problems might be relieved by outside chemical substances such as drugs and alcohol, at least for a while There is also the possibility that alcohol, drugs and nicotine may “break” something in the systems of the body, requiring more of the drug, alcohol or nicotine to correct the process.

In any case, all this speculation points to the importance of chemistry in order to understand chemical processes that can go wrong in life and can increase risk of illness or injury and/or dependance on drugs, alcohol or nicotine.

Vital signs [especially breathing rate and depth and effort] will suggest which chemical process is being affected and possible solutions to help.

Chemicals, – internal and external, – are KEY to the function of cells which contribute to the function of all systems of the body including the function of the brain and of the mind.

Acid base balance in particular, is KEY to brain function. And without brain function and function of the mind, a person becomes severely handicapped and Paula can tell you, that no matter if one experiences euphoria or anguish, being severely mentally handicapped or insane [as Kraepelin called it] is a complete and utter mostly private nightmare.

Kraepelin thought that acid base imbalances were responsible for attacks of manic depressive insanity. No other psychiatrists since, even understand what he was talking about.

Kraepelin understood this because he knew that patients with this syndrome had “broken” ventilatory systems and could not manage their rising levels of endogenous C02 properly under conditions like illness, injury, blood loss, exposure. They would need supportive medical care and/or medications [eg. antibiotics] which had not yet been invented but were on the horizon.

Today no one measures respiratory rate and depth at rest.

Why? No reason . They just don’t. Well, they should, especially when mental functions begin to fail.

Maybe doctors have forgotten their chemistry. Everything in the body involves chemistry and biochemistry.

Or maybe doctors don’t realize that problems with underlying cell function, including that of the brain and mind are likely to involve hydrogen binding and salt bridges, both influenced by pH or acid base issues. Again for more on this look at

This is why measuring the adequacy of the ventilatory system and it reflexes is KEY in syndromes such as Manic Depressive Insanity. Broken ventilation will break down further under mechanical stress and will affect levels of endogenous carbon dioxide, potentially affecting oxygen availability to peripheral tissues [including frontal lobes] and pH [acid base balance].

More simply ,when vital signs become abnormal, this means that something is wrong.

The vital signs serve as a road map that is easy to monitor and easy to read and will help to detect when biochemical systems are physically stressed due to infection, injury and/or exposure.

Homeostasis; Vital Signs: Key points

1] The human body maintains itself in a stable state through homoeostasis, which is central to life.  2] Vital signs are an objective measure of homoeostasis.  3] In ill health, homoeostasis is challenged and vital signs go out of their normal range. 4] Clinical interventions are an attempt at restoring vital signs to their normal range and so restore homoeostasis. 5] Accurate measurement of vital signs is crucial in diagnosis, clinical decision-making and treatment.

Homoeostasis and vital signs: their role in health and its restoration.

Dr Kraepelin understood this. The brain understands this; this is why it tracks endogenous carbon dioxide in the blood [controlled by respiratory rate and depth]. It is time that we all understand this and use it to monitor illness and return to wellness; in all illness, including mental illness.

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