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June 1950

EPIDEMIC DIARRHEA OF THE NEWBORN DURING AND AFTER THE NEONATAL PERIOD

Am J Dis Child. 1950;79(6):1008-1030. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1950.04040011027004
Abstract

EPIDEMIC diarrhea of the newborn is of particular concern to those persons entrusted with the care of infants in the congregate—newborn nurseries, institutions and shelters. Since the disease carries with it a high degree of communicability and an average case fatality rate of 47.4 per cent, sometimes higher, it is obvious that it is a problem in preventive pediatrics of the first magnitude.1

The literature on the whole emphasizes the limitation of susceptibility to the neonatal period or shortly thereafter.2 Secondary cases

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occurring among older infants on pediatric services have been noted, but in these instances the patients either were suffering from concomitant acute illnesses or had recently suffered debilitating diseases.3 The clinical picture, therefore, was not too clear. In May and September 1946, two outbreaks occurred at the New York Foundling Hospital which involved, in addition to infants in the

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