Witnessed Sudden Death of Infants
Submitted by Carin Johnson (not verified) on Mon, 2012-10-15 13:25
"In the recent months, we've had several child abuse cases in which the infant has died suddenly and inexplicably. In two of the cases, the child had a history of asthma.
"In the first case, the child had a history of asthma for which he had been hospitalized once before. He took albuterol via nebulizer as needed when he has wheezing. Further, he had been suffering from a “cold” and congestion for at least a week prior to the incident. On the date of his death, his father stated that he had suddenly gone limp and had fallen down a flight of 20 stone steps. He had many external injuries and an intracranial hemorrhage and therefore the father was investigated and charged with child abuse.
"The second case was very similar except the mother claimed that she was playing hide and seek with the child when she found her unconscious.
"This history of asthma may explain these children’s sudden collapse. Cases of unexplained sudden death in young asthmatic patients have been reported in the literature and the time course from apparent wellness to death has been documented as seconds to minutes. Very young children with asthma have increased vulnerability to adverse outcomes because of small airways, changing patterns of airway flow related to rapid postnatal growth, and possibly increased airway reactivity, in comparison with older children. "