Cerebrospinal, Cephalic-rachid or Encephalospinal Fluids. A Holistic Perspective for Terminologia Anatomica

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Jorge Eduardo Duque Parra & Bélgica Vásquez


The term cerebrospinal fluid is generally used in morphology. In Latin it is known as liquor cerebrospinalis. In the human, this fluid circulates through various cavities of the cen- tral nervous system, of which, five ventricles are recognized. Four are brain components and one is in the terminal part of the spinal cord. The objective of the present study was to determine the most appropriate term for this liquid, while evaluating the current use of terminology in scientific publications and in academic textbooks used to tech neuroanatomy. A non-systematic and randomized bibliographic search of books and scientific articles was carried out, making mention of the encephalic ventricular system fluid and the subarachnoid space of the humans. A total, (100 %) of identified scientific books and articles published in English, used the term cerebrospinal fluid to refer to this fluid; 90 % of the scientific books and articles published in Spanish used the term cephalic-rachid fluid; cerebrospinal fluid was used in 10 % of these. The results show that more than one term continues to be used in Latin America to refer to this structure. International Federation of Anatomical Associations (IFAA) recommendations have not been followed, since most books and scientific research publications use the term cerebrospinal fluid to describe the structure. Moreover, we believe that the cephalic-spinal fluid is the most appropriate term in this case, given that circulation occurs throughout the ventricular nervous system and the subarachnoid space. This term is proposed to replace the current and traditional cerebrospinal fluid in English and cephalic-rachid fluid in Spanish.

KEY WORDS: Cerebrospinal fluid; Cerebrospinal fluid; Brain-spinal fluid; Terminologia Anatomica; Terminologia Neuroanatomica.

How to cite this article

DUQUE-PARRA, J. E. & VÁSQUEZ, B. Cerebrospinal, Cephalic-rachid or encephalospinal fluids. A holistic perspective for Terminologia Anatomica. Int. J. Morphol., 38(5):1421-1425, 2020.