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Hyperventilation and hypoxia

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Hyperventilation and hypoxia
Answer
11/16/15 10:35 PM
So I found an article that kinda explores some ideas I've had peculating since this thread -
link
Daniel M. Ingram:

interesting aside: when laying there in the hospital bed getting fluids i was on the monitors and i kept trying to get into something jhanic, as i find them healing, and the alarm on the bed kept going off, as my respriratory rate would go below 3/minute at times and generally stayed around 7, and when it went the lowest was when i was able to get something passable as perhaps weak 3rd jhana, and then the O2 sat monitor would go off as my oxygen sat kept dropping to the high 80% range, which correlated well with the better mindstates, so one more question for the scientific journal: is hypoxia and/or hypercarbia part of the jhanic buzz?

The Magic of Hyperventilation
© G.M. Woerlee
http://www.anesthesiaweb.org/hyperventilation.php

Some interesting reading so far....
Highlights-
The effects of hyperventilation upon the human brain have been studied intensively for many years. As long ago as the 1940's, hyperventilation was known to cause high amplitude, low frequency delta waves [waves with a frequency of 1-4 Hertz] to manifest in the electroencephalograph of the frontal lobes of the brains of conscious persons (Davis 1942, Meyer 1960, Stoddart 1967, Worp 1991). However, the appearance of delta waves is unrelated to the degree of lowering of arterial carbon dioxide pressure, or the pH increase due to hyperventilation, but is directly related to the occurrence of cerebral hypoxia induced by hyperventilation (Gotoh 1965). Hyperventilation does not only reduce the total cerebral blood flow, but also changes the distribution of blood flow within the brain. Modern studies reveal that blood flow to the frontal, occipital, and parieto-occipital cortex (see Figure 8), as well as the hippocampus is reduced relative to other areas of the brain within seconds to minutes of commencing hyperventilation (Naganawa 2002, Posse 1997).

These relative changes in blood flow and electroencephalogram reflect reduced activity in these regions of the brain. The frontal lobes of the brain are required for cognitive functions such as memory, experience of time, directed attention, reflective consciousness, and the idea of self (Dietrich 2003). So hyperventilation induced cognitive changes such as disturbed mentation, impaired concentration, and poor memory, are readily explained by reduced frontal cortical function - nicely termed “transient hypofrontality” (Dietrich 2003). The occipital cortex performs primary and secondary visual processing, while the parieto-occipital cortex integrates body sensory information into the body image (Blanke 2005, Maravita 2003). Reduced function in these regions of the brain certainly explains other experiences occurring during hyperventilation, such as visual hallucinations, feelings of depersonalization, or feeling that everything is confused and dream-like. 

Here a link to the article on Hypoxia

http://www.anesthesiaweb.org/hypoxia.php

RE: Hyperventalation
Answer
11/16/15 9:48 PM as a reply to Dream Walker.
Hi DW,

I'm a bit confused. Your Subject line is about hyperventilation, i.e. increased oxygen due to increased breathing rate, as is the second quote, but the quote by Daniel and the thread he started is about hypoventilation (if you can call it that), i.e. the lack of oxygen and increased carbon dioxide. The two are I would say on the opposite ends of the spectrum. Was your point that some of the experential characteristics associated with jhana might be a result of physiological changes due to reduced oxygen or enhanced carbon dioxide concentration in the blood?

As an aside, I've heard some speculation that the "light at the end of the tunnel" which some folks experience during a near death experience may be due to reduced oxygen to the brain. Typically, if these folks have religious/spiritual training, they also might experience some feeling of peace and perhaps some presence of people who have already died, spiritual beings, etc. Naturally, the folks who are relating these experiences have recovered and we can't ask those who have died for what they experienced.

RE: Hyperventalation
Answer
11/16/15 10:54 PM as a reply to svmonk.
svmonk:
Hi DW,

I'm a bit confused. Your Subject line is about hyperventilation, i.e. increased oxygen due to increased breathing rate, as is the second quote, but the quote by Daniel and the thread he started is about hypoventilation (if you can call it that), i.e. the lack of oxygen and increased carbon dioxide. The two are I would say on the opposite ends of the spectrum. Was your point that some of the experential characteristics associated with jhana might be a result of physiological changes due to reduced oxygen or enhanced carbon dioxide concentration in the blood?

Curious? but not enough to read the article....ok, here then - :o)
Human studies performed since the 1940's reveal that hyperventilation reduces the cerebral blood flow by causing constriction of the arteries supplying the brain with blood (Pierce 1962, Raichle 1972, Wollman 1965, Wollman 1968a). Seymour Kety devised the first accurate system for measuring the cerebral blood flow which is still the “golden standard” against which other techniques for measuring cerebral blood flow are compared. His articles are still as current and valuable as when they were published during the 1940's. He found that cerebral blood flow is directly related to the carbon dioxide pressure in the blood, and inversely related to the pH of the blood flowing through the arteries going to the brain (Kety 1946, Kety 1948). In other words, the lower the carbon dioxide pressure in the blood, the lower the cerebral blood flow. The studies of Kety clearly demonstrated that when hyperventilation caused the arterial carbon dioxide to drop below 30 mmHg, that the cerebral blood flow dropped below 40 ml/100 gm/min (Kety 1946), a cerebral blood flow threshold below which increasing numbers of people develop manifestations of cerebral hypoxia (Figure 6). And as mentioned earlier, all people develop neurological manifestations due to hyperventilation below an arterial carbon dioxide pressure of 20 mmHg
May the geek be with you...


svmonk:

As an aside, I've heard some speculation that the "light at the end of the tunnel" which some folks experience during a near death experience may be due to reduced oxygen to the brain. Typically, if these folks have religious/spiritual training, they also might experience some feeling of peace and perhaps some presence of people who have already died, spiritual beings, etc. Naturally, the folks who are relating these experiences have recovered and we can't ask those who have died for what they experienced.
"we can't ask those who have died for what they experienced."
You mean you can't?
I totally can.
I've had this ability for a long time. Since early childhood really. I can ask dead people lots of stuff, the only problem being that they refuse to answer the question. They are quite stubborn ;oP

Anesthesia & the Soul
anesthesia-and-the-soul
anesthesia-pit-of-hell
anesthesia-and-obe

RE: Hyperventalation
Answer
11/16/15 11:19 PM as a reply to Dream Walker.
Hi DW,

I briefly skimmed the article (it's pretty long and I'm somewhat familiar with hyperventilation from the scientific side), and read the thread initiated by Daniel you pointed to in detail. Missed the particular paragraph you pointed to in the second post, interesting. I understand the connection now.

Regarding:
"we can't ask those who have died for what they experienced."
You mean you can't?
I totally can.

I've had this ability for a long time. Since early childhood really. I
can ask dead people lots of stuff, the only problem being that they
refuse to answer the question. They are quite stubborn ;oP

Anesthesia & the Soul
anesthesia-and-the-soul
anesthesia-pit-of-hell
anesthesia-and-obe
Well, I've seen Hell and talked with daemons, but not dead people. But, ya know, there's no evidence, outside of what I and others independently and not consensually experience, that any of it exists, and so I don't believe for a minute that any of it does (not that believing or not makes any difference to its existence of course). I tend more towards the view in the links above regarding drugs, and, as you say, the partial pressure of oxygen in the bloodstream.

RE: Hyperventalation
Answer
11/17/15 12:27 PM as a reply to svmonk.
svmonk:
Hi DW,

I briefly skimmed the article (it's pretty long and I'm somewhat familiar with hyperventilation from the scientific side), and read the thread initiated by Daniel you pointed to in detail. Missed the particular paragraph you pointed to in the second post, interesting. I understand the connection now.

Regarding:
"we can't ask those who have died for what they experienced."
You mean you can't?
I totally can.

I've had this ability for a long time. Since early childhood really. I
can ask dead people lots of stuff, the only problem being that they
refuse to answer the question. They are quite stubborn ;oP

Anesthesia & the Soul
anesthesia-and-the-soul
anesthesia-pit-of-hell
anesthesia-and-obe
Well, I've seen Hell and talked with daemons, but not dead people. But, ya know, there's no evidence, outside of what I and others independently and not consensually experience, that any of it exists, and so I don't believe for a minute that any of it does (not that believing or not makes any difference to its existence of course). I tend more towards the view in the links above regarding drugs, and, as you say, the partial pressure of oxygen in the bloodstream.
I do see my dead mother in dreams sometimes and talk to her, seems like she got used to the other side very quickly, which does not surprise me as she was always very adaptable.  (the same did not seem to happen with my father)  I can't always hear or understand exactly what she says but sometimes I do.  Of course it could all just be fantasy on my part, I'd expect any skeptic worth his salt to say as much.  However, you'd think I'd get more good info or stuff I want to hear out of her if I was making it all up myself anyway, LOL!  I suspect the big trick to talking to those passed over is to keep a calm attitude and not freak out with shock, fear, sadness, etc.  If you can keep an open mind and an attitude that is similar to just meeting a person in life, it can go fairly smoothly.  I think people make it hard by thinking it is hard, getting all emotional, etc and all that baggage gets in the way of simple communication.  But of course, it could all just be fantasy!  I think I will continue anyway, just in case though.  ;-P 

For the blood flow thing, that's pretty interesting and you can kind of predict that skeptics are going to pounce on that one as proof that mystic experiences are just lack of brain oxygen.  And to be honest, they will have a very very good argument with that.  But a lot of it comes down to how you conceptualize the job of the brain.  If you think the brain is the origin of self and thought, then it make sense that less oxygen will result in less corrrect functionality. But if you think the brain is just a conduit and control mechanism for spirit, then it makes sense that the quieting of the brain could allow more of the true spiritual self to unfold.  Interestingly, there is some evidence for the latter in many cases where brain damage unlocked surprising savant abilities in some.  Some people get amazing math or artistic abilities they never had before due to brain damage, this flies in the face of common skeptic assumptions on how the brain works.  
-Eva