Development of Normal Fetal Movements: The First 25 Weeks of Gestation

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Springer Science & Business Media, Nov 8, 2010 - Medical - 133 pages
This work sees the light for various reasons. There is a general lack of detailed information about the earliest stages of human motor development. The reasons for this are explained more fully in the Introduction; here we may simply state that, apart from their intrinsic interest, earlier phenomena are fundamental to the comprehension of later phenomena rooted in them, whether pathological or normal. This is especially so in the rapidly - veloping young organism. At birth the neonate is catapulted into a profoundly different physical and social envir- ment requiring extremely diverse functioning: suffice it to mention aerial respiration, no longer being fed through the placenta and the cord, and the full impact of gravity on neonatal movements. The neonate generally adapts smoothly to the transition, as it has been equipped to do so during the 9 months of pregnancy. However, the study of the early stages of fetal motor development should not be exclusively directed towards the und- standing of functioning in the neonate.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
1 General Movements
7
2 Startles Twitches and Clonuses
19
3 Hiccups Yawning and Gasping
29
4 Fetal Breathing Movements
39
5 Swallowing Sucking and Handedness as Inferred from Fetal Thumb Sucking
49
6 Localized Movements
58
7 Facial Expressions
77
8 RestActivity Cycles Clusters and the Ontogeny of Sleep
87
9 Twin Fetuses and Twin Myths
96
10 Conclusions Movement is Life
107
Glossary
115
Subject Index
131
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About the author (2010)

Dr Alessandra Piontelli is an Associate Member of the Italian Psychoanalytic Society. She trained in medicine and neuropsychiatry in Italy and as a child psychotherapist in England where she became part of the teaching staff of the Tavistock Clinic in London.

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