Skip to Content
Medical Term:

parasympathetic part of autonomic (visceral motor) division of peripheral nervous system


Definition: the presynaptic (preganglionic) autonomic neurons having cell bodies located in the brain, associated with the motor nuclei of certain cranial nerves [CNs III, VII, IX, and X], or in the gray matter of spinal cord segments S2–S4, and the postsynaptic neurons with which the presynaptic fibers connect (synapse); in the head, there are four discrete parasympathetic ganglia: ciliary, pterygopalatine, otic, and submandibular/sublingual; in the trunk, the postsynaptic cells occur as isolated intrinsic ganglia.

See: autonomic (visceral motor) division of nervous system

Synonym(s): pars parasympathica divisionis automaticae systematis nervosi periphericiTA, bulbosacral system, craniosacral division of autonomic nervous system, craniosacral nervous system

© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.