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April 10, 1937


Author Affiliations

Rochester, N. Y.

JAMA. 1937;108(15):1258-1259. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.92780150002008a

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In the city of Rochester, N. Y., within the parish of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, there lives a family of seven individuals whose affliction has caused them to be called "i cavalli" by the neighbors. The reason for the nickname, which was not given in any unkindly spirit, is a peculiar prancing, highstepping gait, which characterizes all but two of the seven, in varying degree.

The condition came to my attention through the oldest son, Lorenzo, who came to the orthopedic clinic of the Rochester General Hospital complaining of pain in his right hip, and of nothing else. Physical examination brought to light a paralysis of both anterior tibial muscles, which caused an obvious foot-drop gait. It seemed to the examiner that the patient, in order to balance himself better in walking, held his hips slightly flexed and his spinal column in considerable lordosis. Examination of the painful hip

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