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August 1933


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, Rush Medical College of the University of Chicago, and the Presbyterian Hospital.

Am J Dis Child. 1933;46(2):337-340. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1933.01960020100007

Moro1 first described the embrace reflex that bears his name. He found that when an infant is placed on a table and then the table is forcibly struck on either side of the child, a motor reaction is obtained. The arms are suddenly thrown out in an embrace attitude, describing an arc and tending to approach one another with a slight tremor. The fingers are at first spread and then closed. This observation has been confirmed by Freudenberg,2 Schaltenbrand,3 Peiper and Isbert4 and Gordon.5

Gordon's observations on fifty-four new-born infants are of interest. He found that forty-seven gave a positive reaction. The intensity of the reaction seemed to be influenced by the general condition of the child. In two cases of cerebral hemorrhage a feeble response was obtained on the first two days, with improvement as the general condition became better. Of two other infants

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