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February 12, 1898


Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1898;XXX(7):356-358. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.72440590016001d

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Much as this subject has been discussed, it does not seem to have been approached from the right point of view.

The young infant is in evidence, whose manifestations and peculiarities have been entirely overlooked. First, there is no asymmetry of body or function in early infancy. The child uses its two arms, legs and hands equally well. If there is any heredity of one-sidedness, it does not appear. The first day of life one thing is especially manifest. Beyond all other parts of the body, the hands show greatest development in function. Flexion and extension of fingers, hands and arms are wonderfully perfect and truly bilateral. The first day of infant life the grasping power of the hands is extraordinary. If permitted to clasp a pole with both hands it does so with firmness and will easily sustain its entire weight for a prolonged period. All other parts of

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