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Cerebrospinal Fluid
The Physiology of CSF

CSF is one of many fluids produced in the human body. This fluid is specific to the central nervous system (the brain, spinal cord).

Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is the viscous liquid which ‘pads’ or ‘cushions’ the brain and spinal cord as well as allowing metabolites and even some cells to disperse in its medium.

Considering CSF is produced by cells with the ability to filter blood, we can understand why CSF will have blood components in it. Nevertheless, the cells that produce CSF are very selective. If they weren't so 'picky', then CSF would simply resemble blood, and then we wouldn't need these cells. CSF and its components has to be carefully modified and controlled and that's what these cells do.

CSF - "the brains pillow"

If it weren’t for the CSF, the brain would simply rest against the delicate and sensitive tissues lining the inner skull. Interestingly, the very organ that needs CSF the most, also produces it. Most of the CSF is produced by cells lining the ventricles of the brain. These cells are called ependymal cells and they filter our blood, to make CSF.

Onoce CSF is produced, it then gently traverses the structures until it reaches the spinal cord, ultimately covering the entire area. With this in mind, we can see the importance of CSF.

A smaller amount of CSF is also made from some blood vessels entering the brain and from some of the supporting tissues of the Central Nervous system. However, the bulk of it is produced in the ventricles. The lesser amount is just as important though, as it adds to the CSF volume and can act as a homeostatic mechanism for 'topping up' the level.

the average person produces nearly 500 millilitres(ml) of CSF every 24 hours. And we usually only have around 150 millilitres of CSF present in the sytem. If we produce 500 ml and only have 150 ml present, this tells us, that we are producing 3 times more than we need. But is this a waste? Of course not, the body wastes very little. The CSF is continually replenished. If it weren't there could be metabolic waste buildup in, which could cause meningitis and symptoms of metabolic CSF fluctuation. Therefore, the CSF is continually replenished.

CSF - Disorders of low CSF"

Low CSF can cause serious symptoms to anyone experiencing low levels. Severe dehydration, injury to the protective tissues overlying the Central nervous System (CNS), genetic instabilities of the tissues 'encapsulatinng' the CSF and metabolic disorders can contribute to low CSF levels through.


Insufficient production (probably more rare), as we were discussing above that the average person produces nearly 500 millilitres/24 hours. Examples of conditions arising from low CSF

If the CSF decreases for any reason, symptoms and signs may develop. Common symptoms include disorientation, headache, slight to intense dizziness, vertigo and sometimes effects on hearing.

Notable examples are spontaneous intracranail hypotension (SIH) and CSF 'leaks' and Deyhydration states.

Is there anything else I can do on my own to help low CSF volumes?
Review this with your doctor - but adequate fluid intake sometimes helps, along with proper nutrition - since Cerebrospinal Fluid is a filtrate of the blood, higher water intakes accordingly increasse blood volume - the theory here is that this will cause CSF production to increase.

These links may also be helpful to you

Homeostasis I.

CSF -low CSF and SIH..


Bhiochemistry of Water

Water - Intake and Requirements




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