Eliciting Primitive Neonatal Reflexes

Neonatal reflexes are the reflexes which are present at birth and have a predictable course of appearance and disappearance. A normally developing newborn should respond to certain stimuli with these reflexes, which eventually become inhibited as the child matures.

The list of reflexes that can be elicited in normal newborn are:

  1. Moros Reflex
  2. Rooting reflex
  3. Sucking reflex
  4. Grasp reflex
  5. Babinski reflex
  6. Asymmetric tonic neck reflex (ATNR)
  7. Gallant reflex
  8. Stepping reflex
  9. Landau’s reflex
  10. Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex
moro's reflex
“Moro!” by found_drama is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/?ref=openverse.
BabinskiSole of foot strokedFans out toes and twists foot inDisappears at 9 months – 1 year
BlinkingFlash of light or puff of airCloses eyesPermanent
GraspingPalms touchedGrasps tightlyWeakens at 3 months; disappears at 1 year
MoroSudden move; loud noiseStartles; throws out arms and legs and then pulls them toward bodyDisappears at 3-4 months
RootingCheek stroked or side of mouth touchedTurns toward source, opens mouth and sucksDisappears at 3-4 months
SteppingInfant held upright with feet touching groundMoves feet as if to walkDisappears at 3-4 months
SuckingMouth touched by objectSucks on objectDisappears at 3-4 months
SwimmingPlaced face down in waterMakes coordinated swimming movementsDisappears at 6-7 months
Tonic neckPlaced on backMakes fists and turns head to the rightDisappears at 2 months

After going through the table, you can now watch this video showing the commonly elicited neonatal reflexes and their significance.

Here is a helpful library onΒ Pediatric neurology.

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