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January 1928


Author Affiliations

Resident Physician, The Physiatric Institute MORRISTOWN, N. J.
From the Children's Medical Department of the Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, service of Dr. Fritz B. Talbot.

Am J Dis Child. 1928;35(1):26-35. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1928.01920190033005

Information regarding the appetite of children is notoriously absent from the medical literature. The analysis, classification and treatment of other such prominent symptoms as glycosuria, convulsions and dyspnea have always held an important position in medical textbooks and journals. There are many reasons why the symptom "anorexia" has been neglected. A child's appetite is normally good, and when it is depleted it becomes a secondarily subjective symptom through the objective observation of the mother. There are few dependable objective signs that will infallibly confirm or deny the subjective complaint of loss of appetite in children. As far as this report is concerned, anorexia is considered unimportant unless it is severe and chronic enough to produce objective signs of malnutrition. There is such a variety of methods of treatment for a diminished appetite in the absence of any definite and specific stimulant that it is doubtful whether or not they have

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