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July 1951


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the Section of Neuro-Otology of the Department of Otolaryngology, and the Department of Pediatrics of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1951;82(1):14-16. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1951.02040040021003

ON SEVERAL occasions we have encountered a pregnant woman for whom the administration of streptomycin was deemed necessary for treatment of tuberculosis. Molitor and co-workers1 have reported that weanling rats given repeated doses of streptomycin showed a retardation of growth and pronounced nervous hyperexcitability. No such changes were noted in adult rats. These observations suggest that the immature organism may be more susceptible to the neurotoxic effects of streptomycin than the adult. Since streptomycin crosses the placenta,2 the possibility of fetal damage from prolonged administration of the drug required consideration. In the two clinical reports3 that have appeared, a total of seven infants whose mothers received streptomycin during pregnancy were studied. The infants were followed for two to 11 mo. after birth. All were said to be normal. However, apparently not all the infants had their vestibular function tested. Presented here are three additional cases in which

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