Normal and pathologic laughter in children

Clin Pediatr (Phila). 1991 Nov;30(11):630-2. doi: 10.1177/000992289103001103.


Laughter is a partly involuntary act involving complex pathways in the central nervous system. Laughter normally has positive effects on emotions; however, pathologic laughter is not related to emotion and occurs independent of a stimulus in the environment. This paper outlines normal laughter and the etiology of pathologic laughter, considering both congenital and acquired causes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Humans
  • Laughter* / physiology
  • Laughter* / psychology