Characteristics of Shaken Baby Syndrome
Shaken Baby Syndrome is, “a condition of whiplash-type injuries, ranging from bruises on the arms and trunk to retinal hemorrhages or convulsions, as observed in infants and children who have been violently shake; a form of child abuse that often results in intracranial bleeding from tearing of cerebral blood vessels” (Jacobs & Jacobs, 2004, p. 214).
There are numerous signs and symptoms that characterize Shaken Baby Syndrome such as extreme irritability, difficulty staying awake, breathing problems, poor eating, tremors, vomiting, pale or bluish color, seizures, paralysis, and coma (Mayo Clinic Staff, 2011). The severity of symptoms is dependent on the severity of shaking inflicted upon the child. A hallmark symbol of SBS could be hemorrhages in the retinas of the eyes (Blackman, 1990, p. 70) or absence of external injuries (Miehl, 2005, p. 113).
Risk factors involve the child itself and the parent or caretaker. Risk factors for the child consist of male gender, history of colic, prematurity, low birth weight, drug/nicotine/alcohol exposure, or withdrawal syndrome, special needs or medically fragile and babies with poor bonding to caregivers (Meskauskas, Beaton, & Meservey, 2009, p. 326). Young parental age, unstable family environment, low soc...
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Miehl, N. (2005). Shaken baby syndrome. Journal of Forensic Nursing 1(3), 111-117. Retrieved from http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.parkland.edu:2048/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=6&sid=5afd0ec9-9244-4874-888f-58b9a8746292%40sessionmgr4004&hid=4214
Parker, G. E., Solomon, J. W., & O’Brien, J. C. (2011). Pediatric health conditions. In J.W. Soloman & J. C. O’Brien (Ed.), Pediatric skills for occupational therapy assistants. (190-234). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.
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Smith, J. (2003). Shaken baby syndrome. Orthopaedic Nursing 22(6), 196-205.
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