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January 1952


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, Temple University School of Medicine.

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1952;83(1):52-53. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1952.02040050068007

SCLEREMA neonatorum is a diffuse hardening of the subcutaneous tissues occurring in undernourished, debilitated full-term and premature infants.1 In an excellent review of the literature Hughes and Hammond2 have summarized the significant findings of this condition as follows:

(1) Average age of onset was 4 days with extremes from birth to 70 days; (2) 25 per cent of the mothers were ill at the time of delivery; (3) all but two deliveries were spontaneous; (4) average birth weight was 2,800 Gm. with variations from 2,150 to 4,100 Gm.; (5) the majority of infants exhibited abnormal behavior at birth, weakness and cyanosis being the most common symptoms; (6) almost all children had difficulty with body temperature control and evidences of other complications besides sclerema; (7) 75 per cent died, with the average age of death 12 days; (8) eleven infants were autopsied, thickening of connective tissue bands being the