Can shaken baby syndrome be misdiagnosed?

(KMSP) – A growing number of medical experts believe the diagnosis of shaken baby syndrome is being misdiagnosed in too many cases that often end up breaking up innocent families.

What can mimic shaken baby syndrome?

Collagen disorders such as Osteogenesis Imperfecta, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, and others are recognized to make patients susceptible to bone fragility fractures, subdural hemorrhage, retinal hemorrhage and bruising. Child abuse experts often dismiss collagen disorders, or never even test for or consider them.

Can shaken baby syndrome be difficult to diagnose?

It can be difficult to diagnose SBS because some of the symptoms can be attributed to other diseases or disorders, and the person who brings the baby for medical treatment may not be honest about how the baby was hurt or may not know what happened.

Could I accidentally cause shaken baby syndrome?

Can Shaken Baby Syndrome Be Caused Accidentally? Shaken baby syndrome is almost always a result of child abuse, often perpetrated by a parent or caregiver who shakes an infant angrily in response to persistent crying.

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Can doctors tell if a baby has been shaken?

A diagnosis of SBS relies on a series of three symptoms called the “triad”: brain bleeding, retinal bleeding, and brain swelling. Physicians assumed that shaken babies would show immediate evidence of brain injury.

What is the punishment for shaken baby syndrome?

Normally a defendant will face a mandatory five year minimum jail sentence for these charges. When the baby dies, the charge is murder or manslaughter and these jail sentences can be much longer. 20 to 40 years for third degree murder. Life imprisonment and even the death penalty for first degree murder.

How do you test for shaken baby syndrome?

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  1. Skeletal survey. Several X-rays of the bones — possibly including the arms, hands, legs, feet, spine, ribs and skull — may be used to determine whether fractures are accidental or purposeful. …
  2. Eye exam. …
  3. Blood tests. …
  4. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). …
  5. Computerized tomography (CT) scan.

At what age does shaken baby syndrome stop?

Shaken baby syndrome is more common in children under age 2, but it can affect children up to age 5.

Can a bumpy car ride cause shaken baby syndrome?

Can baby get shaken baby syndrome in the womb? No. Going down a bumpy road while pregnant, jumping, running or even tripping won’t affect baby, thanks to the protective amniotic fluid inside the uterus, Horton explains.

How soon do shaken baby syndrome appear?

A child who has been shaken or thrown may also have other signs of abuse, such as broken bones, bruises, or burns. Symptoms can start quickly, especially in a badly injured child. Other times, it may take a few days for brain swelling to cause symptoms.

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What happens if I accidentally shook my baby?

If a baby is forcefully shaken, his or her fragile brain moves back and forth inside the skull. This causes bruising, swelling and bleeding. Shaken baby syndrome usually occurs when a parent or caregiver severely shakes a baby or toddler due to frustration or anger — often because the child won’t stop crying.

What symptoms might a baby have who has been shaken?

A child or baby who has been shaken and has had an injury to the brain may have symptoms such as:

  • Extreme irritability.
  • Vomiting.
  • Poor appetite or feeding problems.
  • Breathing difficulties.
  • Convulsions (seizures).
  • Lethargy (extreme tiredness, lack of movement, inability to stay awake).
  • Pale- or blue-colored skin.

Can you shake your baby too hard?

When a baby is shaken hard by the shoulders, arms, or legs, it can cause learning disabilities, behavior disorders, vision problems or blindness, hearing and speech issues, seizures, cerebral palsy, serious brain injury, and permanent disability. In some cases, it can be fatal.