ITEMS IN AFP WITH MESH TERM:
Sudden Infant Death
ABSTRACT: Apparent life-threatening event syndrome predominantly affects children younger than one year. This syndrome is characterized by a frightening constellation of symptoms in which the child exhibits some combination of apnea, change in color, change in muscle tone, coughing, or gagging. Approximately 50 percent of these children are diagnosed with an underlying condition that explains the apparent life-threatening event. Commonly, the problems are digestive (up to 50 percent), neurologic (30 percent), respiratory (20 percent), cardiac (5 percent), and endocrine or metabolic (less than 5 percent). Fifty percent of these events are idiopathic, which causes great concern to parents and physicians. The evaluation of an affected infant involves a thorough description of the event as well as prenatal, birth, medical, social, and family history. The physical examination, including careful neurologic examination and notation of any apparent anatomic abnormalities, helps diagnose congenital problems, infection, and conditions contributing to respiratory compromise. The laboratory evaluation is driven by historical and physical findings. Inpatient evaluation and monitoring are recommended in virtually all cases unless investigations are normal. Should the history reflect a severe episode, or should the child require major interventions such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, inpatient observation and monitoring are recommended, even if physical examination and laboratory findings are normal. Once a presumptive diagnosis is made, events should cease after appropriate intervention. If not, reviewing the history, performing another physical examination, and reassessing the need for laboratory and imaging studies are the next steps. Although consensus statements by the National Institutes of Health and the American Academy of Pediatrics support home monitoring, the relationship of apparent life-threatening event syndrome to sudden infant death syndrome is controversial.
ABSTRACT: Injuries are the leading cause of death in children and teenagers in the United States. The leading causes of unintentional injury vary by age and include drowning, poisoning, suffocation, fires, burns, falls, and motor vehicle, bicycle, and pedestrian-related crashes. Most injuries are preventable by modifying the child's environment (e.g., use of stair gates) and having parents engage in safety practices (e.g., keeping matches or lighters out of reach of children). Effective injury prevention methods include the use of childproof caps on medications and household poisons, age-appropriate restraints in motor vehicles (i.e., car seats, booster seats, seat belts), bicycle helmets, and a four-sided fence with a locked gate around residential swimming pools.
ABSTRACT: Although the cause or causes of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) remain unknown, the incidence of SIDS is on the decline in the United States and other countries. This decline has been accomplished largely through public education campaigns informing parents about several important factors associated with an increased risk of SIDS. These factors are prone and side infant sleeping positions, exposure of infants to cigarette smoke and potentially hazardous sleeping environments. Risk-reduction measures such as placing healthy infants to sleep in the supine position, avoiding passive smoke exposure both before and after birth and optimizing crib safety are beginning to lower the SIDS rate in this country. Through patient education, family physicians can further reduce the incidence of the number one cause of death in infants one week to one year old.
Risks and Benefits of Pacifiers - Article
ABSTRACT: Physicians are often asked for guidance about pacifier use in children, especially regarding the benefits and risks, and when to appropriately wean a child. The benefits of pacifier use include analgesic effects, shorter hospital stays for preterm infants, and a reduction in the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Pacifiers have been studied and recommended for pain relief in newborns and infants undergoing common, minor procedures in the emergency department (e.g., heel sticks, immunizations, venipuncture). The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents consider offering pacifiers to infants one month and older at the onset of sleep to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Potential complications of pacifier use, particularly with prolonged use, include a negative effect on breastfeeding, dental malocclusion, and otitis media. Adverse dental effects can be evident after two years of age, but mainly after four years. The American Academy of Family Physicians recommends that mothers be educated about pacifier use in the immediate postpartum period to avoid difficulties with breastfeeding. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Physicians recommend weaning children from pacifiers in the second six months of life to prevent otitis media. Pacifier use should not be actively discouraged and may be especially beneficial in the first six months of life.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - Article
ABSTRACT: Sudden infant death syndrome is the leading cause of death among healthy infants, affecting 0.57 per 1,000 live births. The most easily modifiable risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome is sleeping position. To reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, parents should be advised to place infants on their backs to sleep and avoid exposing the infant to cigarette smoke. Other recommendations include use of a firm sleeping surface and avoidance of sleeping with soft objects, bed sharing, and overheating the infant. Pacifier use appears to decrease the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, but should be avoided until one month of age in infants who are breastfed. The occurrence of apparent life-threatening events does not increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, and home apnea monitoring does not lower the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Supine sleeping position has increased the incidence of flattening of the occiput (deformational plagiocephaly), but this condition can be prevented and treated by encouraging supervised "tummy time," meaning that when awake, infants should spend as much time as possible on their stomachs. All apparent deaths from sudden infant death syndrome should be carefully investigated to exclude other causes of death, including child abuse. Families who have an infant die from sudden infant death syndrome should be offered emotional support and grief counseling.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - Clinical Evidence Handbook
Evaluation of Apparent Life-threatening Events in Infants - FPIN's Clinical Inquiries
AAP Expands Recommendations on SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Deaths - Practice Guidelines