Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention

What is Shaken Baby Syndrome?

Shaken baby syndrome is a type of inflicted traumatic brain injury that happens when a baby is violently shaken.  A baby has weak neck muscles and a large, heavy head.  Shaking makes the fragile brain bounce back and forth inside the skull and causes bruising, swelling, and bleeding, which can lead to permanent, severe brain damage or death.  The characteristic injuries of shaken baby syndrome are subdural hemorrhages (bleeding in the brain), retinal hemorrhages (bleeding in the retina), damage to the spinal cord and neck, and fractures of the ribs and bones.  These injuries may not be immediately noticeable.  Symptoms of shaken baby syndrome include extreme irritability, lethargy, poor feeding, breathing problems, convulsions, vomiting, and pale or bluish skin.  Shaken baby injuries usually occur in children younger than 2 years old, but may be seen in children up to the age of 5.

How can we prevent it?

History confirms that awareness translates to prevention. A program initiated by Dr. Angela Rosas from the Sutter Health group in conjunction with the University of California, Kaiser and the Catholic Health group has shown that deaths from Shaken Baby Syndrome dropped by 80% after the initiation of the educational program.

District 5160 can  supply Shaken Baby Simulator dolls to schools and hospitals. With the simulators, Medical staff can quickly and easily demonstrate to future parents how easily infants can be damaged by shaking. Aware parents are careful parents.

For details contact

Bud Wolf
Rotary Club of Davis
District 5160 Child Abuse Prevention Representative