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August 1964

Ordinal Position In Asthma and Hyperthyroidism

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1964;11(2):181-184. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1964.01720260075010

I. Introduction  This study is an attempt to investigate whether patients suffering from certain, commonly called "psychosomatic" diseases occupy special places in their sibships in terms of birthorder or ordinal position. The ordinal positions we have concerned ourselves with are those of oldest, youngest, intermediate, next-to-last, and only child. By birth order is meant the absolute ordinal position, for example 2nd, 3rd or 4th child.The diseases studied are bronchial asthma and hyperthyroidism.The following considerations led to the present investigation:1. According to some authorities in genetics, the study of ordinal position and other comparable variables can be valuable if one is concerned with nature-nurture interactions.6 It can be said that if individuals exhibiting a certain characteristic are nonrandomly distributed as to ordinal position or birth order, that characteristic must have other than purely genetic determinants.112. Investigation of the structure and dynamics