The danger of opium as a remedy in infancy has only recently been recognized. Many physicians give the drug or its alkaloids without the slightest recognition of its possible injurious effects on the organism in the future. In a recent text-book, a statement is made that the action of opium is transient in infancy, and without danger except in large doses. The prominence of certain proprietary drugs, as soothing syrups for children, and the characteristic effects of opium, with the great injuries noted later, have brought out facts of the damage from these sources.
In current literature little notice is taken of this danger, and yet a great variety of facts are constantly appearing, pointing out the disease and degeneration clearly traceable to this cause. In all probability the largest use of opium in infancy comes from its domestic application. The various tinctures and infusions are household remedies and, in
CROTHERS TD. USE OF OPIUM IN INFANCY, SEEN IN ADULT LIFE. JAMA. 1900;XXXIV(20):1232–1235. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.1900.24610200018001f
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