The correlations between physiological modalities in microwave field-activated systemic or localized regulatory mechanisms with changes in the central nervous system (CNS) seem not to be identical. These problems are important because of the increased number of radiating appliances, e.g. portable radios and mobile telephones. In two series of experiments on anaesthetized rats (N = 40) (i) before and after 10 min, whole body exposures to 2.45 GHz CW microwaves, and (ii) during 30 min exposures to 4 GHz amplitude modulated (AM, 16 Hz) microwaves, the effects on the CNS were observed simultaneously with those on the cardiovascular system by quantitative polygraphic measurement. In acute experiments on rats, electroencephalograms (EEG), rheoencephalograms (REG) as an index of cerebral blood flow (CBF), brain tissue DC impedance and temperature and ECG were recorded simultaneously. The total power of EEG spectra increased after whole body 30 mW/cm2 2.45 GHz CW exposure for 10 min. No changes occurred at 10 mW/cm2. The CBF increased after 10 mW/cm2 exposure. The power of EEG delta (0.5-4 Hz) waves was increased by thermal level of brain localized 4 GHz CW exposure at 42 mW/g specific absorption rate (SAR) simultaneously with the REG amplitude as an index of cerebral blood flow. Amplitude modulation at 16 Hz and 8.4 mW/g SAR was associated with increased power of EEG beta (14.5-30 Hz) waves but changes in the CBF were not observed. CW radiation at 8.4 mW/g increased the cerebral blood flow, but did not change EEG spectra.