(redirected from juvenile amaurotic familial idiocy)
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The lowest grade of mental deficiency; the individual's mental age is less than 3 years.



a severe degree of mental retardation—oligophrenia. Speech is usually undeveloped and inarticulate, the movements are awkward and poorly differentiated. Desires are elementary and remain unchecked. In some cases idiocy is characterized by motor and general disinhibition; in others the patients are sluggish and inactive. Reaction to the surroundings is absent (the surroundings attract no attention). Training for habits of personal care and behavior is severely limited; education, even in auxiliary specialized institutions, is virtually unworkable. Treatment has been developed for some forms of idiocy (glutamic acid, sedatives and neuroleptic agents, diets, and surgery). A major role is played by therapeutic pedagogy—systematic training for customary, elementary habits of behavior, personal care, and ordering of reactions.

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