Shaken Baby Syndrome

Monday, June 24, 2013

A parents frustration with a child can sometimes result in devastating consequences. Shaken baby syndrome, also called shaken impact syndrome, is the leading cause of child abuse death in the United States. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Shaken baby syndrome is brain damage caused when a baby is shaken, slammed or thrown against an object.

Babies heads are larger in relationship to their bodies, and their neck muscles are not well developed. If a baby is forcefully shaken, the brain moves back and forth striking the inside of the skull. This type of injury can cause bruising, swelling, or tearing of the brain.

Brain injury and bleeding can cause increased pressure in the brain, which can lead to permanent brain damage. There can also be damage to the blood vessels at the back of the eye, which may cause bleeding inside the eye, vision problems and even blindness. If the injury is severe enough, the baby could die.

If you know a baby has been shaken, it is your responsibility to notify a health professional. Adults need to protect babies from these injuries. They cannot protect themselves.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.