Development of a Child with Long-Lasting Deprivation of Oral Feeding

Stavroula Beratis, Rachael Kolb, Edward Sperling, Ruth E.K. Stein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Observations of a patient who was not fed by mouth until the age of 3 3/4 years demonstrated decreased oral exploratory behavior, delayed gross motor development, shallow relatedness, lack of motivation and intentionality, and absence of pleasure in gross motor accomplishments, as has been described in other similarly affected children. In addition, this patient showed a striking lack of pleasure of his overall functioning and long-lasting difficulty in learning to eat. It appears that the longer the oral deprivation is maintained, the more severe is its impact on development. Pleasure in this patient's overall functioning emerged only after pleasurable oral intake of food was established.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-64
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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