The History of ANS Analysis
Begins in the Third Century A.D.

A Chinese doctor named Wang Shu-he documented this in his writings known as Mai Ching or The Knowledge of Pulse Diagnosis, which is still today a classic in the "pulse literature" field. One of the sentences he set down is often quoted today:

If the heartbeat gets as regular as the knocking of the woodpecker or the dripping of the rain on the roof, the patient will die within four days.

Further Milestones of ANS Analysis / HRV Analysis

  • 1891 - Müller reveals a lower increase in heart rate in heart disease patients on atropine
  • 1927 - Winterberg and Wenkelbach describe respiratory sinus arrhythmia
  • 1965 - Hon and Lee describe changes to the RR intervals during fetal distress
  • 1972 - Hinkel et al. relate increased risk of cardiac death to reduced respiratory sinus arrhythmia
  • 1978 - Wolf et al. describe a connection between HRV and heart attack mortality
  • 1981 - (Akselrod et al. 1981) "The spectral analysis of HRV is meaningful as a noninvasive, quantitative indicator of the functionality of cardiovascular control systems"
  • 1990 - HRV analysis is first used in clinical cardiology and diabetology
  • 2000 - HRV is included in the risk stratification for sudden cardiac death
  • 2011 - HRV analysis is included in the Curriculum for Special Pain Medicine and Psychosomatics at the Hannover Medical School
  • 2010 -HRV analysis is added to German Disease Management Guidelines Program in the topic of diabetic neuropathy in adults

In 1925, scientist Heinrich Hering prophesized:

The wise use of the autonomic system will someday represent the core skill in the art of healing.

Dr. Johann Diederich Hahn-Godeffroy:

The autonomic nervous system, the maintaining of a harmonic balance between tension and relaxation  is the art of life.