– is characterized by the involuntary blink of the eye when aninfant is subjected to a bright light, wind, or rapid approach of an object. This involuntary action protects the eyes and istherefore maintained throughout life.
Examination can be used to determine functional vision in smallchildren. It is a simple test conducted by suddenly moving an objecttowards the eyes of the child. Expected age-relative responses areoutline below:
– is elicited bystroking the cheek. The infant will turn toward the side that wasstroked and begin to make sucking motions with its mouth.
– occurs when the mouth of the neonate has beenstimulated. It is strongest in the first 3 to 5 months of life, andis one of the signs of a neurologically healthy infant.
- (Normal response) newborn swallows in coordinationwith sucking when fluid is placed on back of tongue.(Abnormal response) gagging, coughing, or regurgitation of fluid may occur, possibly associated with cyanosis secondary toprematurity, neurologic deficit, or injury; typically seen afterlaryngoscopy.
- (Normal response) newborns turns head in direction of stimulies, opens mouth, and begins to suck when cheek, lip, orcorner of mouth is touched with finger or nipple.(Abnormal response) continuous extrusion of tongue orrepetitive tongue thrusting occurs with CND anomalies andseizures.
Palmar Grasp Reflex
– is elicited by placing a finger on the infants openpalm. The hand will close around the finger. Attempting toremove the finger causes the grip to tighten. Newborn infantshave strong grasps and can almost be lifted from theexamination table if both hands are used.
Step in place
- (Normal response) newborn with step with one foot and thenthe other in walking motion when one foot is touched to flatsurface.(Abnormal response) asymmetrical response is seen with CNSor peripheral nerve injury or fracture of long bone of leg.
Plantar Grasp Reflex
- (Normal response) newborn’s toes will curldownward when a finger is placed against the base of the toes.(Abnormal response) diminished response occurs withprematurity. No response occurs with severe neurologic deficit.AGEResponsesNewbornNo response3-4 monthsReflex startsappearing5 monthsPresent in 50% of infants1 year oldPresent in all infants