The main difference between somatic and visceral reflex is that the somatic reflex occurs in skeletal muscle whereas, the visceral reflex wake up in soft organization organs. Furthermore, the somatic nervous mechanism produces somatic reflexes while autonomic nervous system produces visceral reflexes.

Somatic and also visceral reflex room two types of reflex arcs or nerve circuits produced by the various systems that the peripheral nervous system. Both types of reflexes are necessary for the coordination between the central nervous system and the effector organ. 

Key locations Covered 

1. What is Somatic Reflex – Definition, Features, types 2. What is Visceral Reflex – Definition, Features, species 3. What space the Similarities in between Somatic and also Visceral Reflex – synopsis of typical features 4. What is the Difference between Somatic and also Visceral Reflex – compare of an essential Differences

Key Terms 

Autonomic nervous System, skeleton Muscles, Smooth Muscle Contractions, Somatic worried System, Somatic Reflex, Visceral Reflex 


What is Somatic Reflex 

Somatic reflex is the reflex the the somatic concerned system, i m sorry produces unconscious engine responses in skeletal muscles. Here, it provides alpha engine neurons, which control the voluntarily muscular movements. Listed below are some instances of somatic reflexes. 

Stretch reflex – the is responsible because that the stretch of the skeletal muscles. The is a form of monosynaptic reflex; therefore, the is rapid. Flexor reflex – that is responsible for the pulling the end of the body components in solution to a hot stove. The is a polysynaptic reflex.

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Figure 1: Somatic Reflex

Crossed-extensor reflex – responsible because that the strong withdrawal reflexes in solution to spicy objects. 

What is Visceral Reflex 

Visceral reflex is the reflex arc that the autonomic nervous system which produces a glandular or non-skeletal muscular response in interior organs favor the heart, blood vessels, guts in the gastrointestinal tract, etc.


Figure 2: Visceral and also Somatic Efferent Pathways

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Some examples of visceral reflexes are sneezing, coughing, swallowing, vomiting, dilation that the pupil, contraction of smooth muscle of the hole organs in various organ systems. 

Similarities in between Somatic and Visceral Reflex 

Somatic and also visceral reflex space two species of reflex arcs or nerve circuits which coordinate the role of different effector organs. Both reflexes start from the spinal cord. Therefore, both varieties of reflexes occur before the information reaches the brain. Generally, they use the efferent pathway for their calculation while they receive sensory signals through the afferent pathway. Also, the five components of each reflex arc room the sensory receptor, sensory neuron, integration center, motor neuron, and effector target. Besides, both produce a rapid, involuntary, and predictable an answer in an answer to a particular stimulus. 

Difference between Somatic and Visceral Reflex 


Somatic reflex describes a reflex induced by stimulation the somatic sensory nerve endings while the visceral reflex refers to a reflex mediated through autonomic nerves and also initiated in the viscera. Thus, this is the fundamental difference in between somatic and visceral reflex.

Type of concerned System 

Another difference in between somatic and visceral reflex is the the somatic nervous device produces somatic reflex if the autonomic nervous device produces visceral reflex. 

Effector Organ 

The main difference in between somatic and visceral reflex is the the somatic reflex innervates skeletal muscles while the visceral reflex innervates soft tissue organs. 


Furthermore, the somatic reflexes contract skeletal muscle while the visceral reflexes room responsible because that the contractions of the cradle system and also reproductive system, dilation that the pupil, defecating and also vomiting. 


Moreover, the somatic reflexes safeguard the body from injuries when the visceral reflexes lug out the functions of the internal organs. Hence, this is another difference between somatic and visceral reflex.


Somatic reflex is the nerve circuit of the somatic nervous system. That is responsible for the convulsion of bones muscles. On the various other hand, the visceral reflex is the nerve circuit that the autonomic concerned system. The is responsible for the contraction of smooth muscles and organs inside the body. Therefore, the key difference between somatic and also visceral reflex is the type of effector organ.


1. “Anatomy and Physiology.” introduction to Sociology – first Canadian Edition, BCcampus, 6 Mar. 2013, Available Here

Image Courtesy:

1. “Imgnotraçat arc reflex eng” through MartaAguayo – Own job-related (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia 2. “1505 compare of Somatic and also Visceral Reflexes” by OpenStax college – Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions web site, Jun 19, 2013. (CC by 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia