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October 1969


Am J Dis Child. 1969;118(4):669. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1969.02100040671027

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To the Editor.—The term "funny looking kid (FLK)" has unfortunately crept into the pediatrician's jargon in describing a patient with an unusual facial appearance. It is now also being used by nurses and paramedical personnel, particularly those working in the field of genetics and mental retardation. Although it may be descriptive, I believe it is a poor choice. Webster's Dictionary defines "funny" as "affording light mirth and laughter; seeking or intended to amuse." Another less commonly used definition is "different from the ordinary in a suspicious way: queer." I vividly recall a mother coming to me with tears in her eyes after a group of physicians had just examined her child and called him a "funny looking kid." The term does not connote much compassion on the part of the physician.

I should like to recommend that we discontinue the use of this term and use in its place

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