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December 1949

ACUTE RESPIRATORY DISORDERS AMONG NEWBORN INFANTS IN OBSTETRIC NURSERIES: Experience in New York City, 1940 to 1948

Author Affiliations

NEW YORK
From the Bureau of Preventable Diseases, New York City Department of Health, and from the Department of Pediatrics, New York Medical College, Flower and Fifth Avenue Hospitals.

Am J Dis Child. 1949;78(6):883-891. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1949.02030050902004
Abstract

SEVERAL years ago,1 a study was published on the role played by the surgical mask in prevention of respiratory disorders among newborn infants in nurseries of lying-in hospitals. After that report, communications were received questioning whether respiratory disorders constitute a danger in obstetric nurseries. Statements were made to the effect that outbreaks of respiratory disorders, especially the milder forms, are unusual among newborn infants, and that these babies require possibly ten days or more for sensitization to infectious agents, including colds and other respiratory ailments. Opinions were also advanced that agents responsible for these disorders in older children or adults may possibly cause symptoms of intestinal infection in newborn infants.

REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE  General Observations.–A search of the literature gave little information on the susceptibility of newborn infants to the acute respiratory disorders. Brennemann2 stated that a definite degree of immunity to lobar pneumonia and bronchopneumonia

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