skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 162859 Find in a Library
Title: Shaken Babies - Some Have No Impact Injuries
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:41  Issue:1  Dated:(January 1996)  Pages:114-116
Author(s): M G F Gilliland; R Folberg
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 3
Type: Statistics
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study confirms that retinal hemorrhages are a good marker of infants injured by vigorous, intentional shaking, and that most, but not all, shaken babies have impact injuries as well.
Abstract: A postmortem study investigated 80 infant deaths from head trauma to identify the roles of shaking and direct impacts. Evidence of shaking was defined as two or more of the following: finger marks or rib fractures; subdural or subarachnoid hemorrhage; or a history of vigorous shaking. Shaking to the exclusion of other head trauma was defined as the presence of two or more of the above together with the complete absence of scalp or skull injuries. Nine of the study deaths qualified as exclusively shaking injuries by this definition. Thirty of the deaths had direct injuries as well as two of the criteria of shaking; these deaths were classified as combined shaking and blunt trauma. Forty-one of the deaths had impact injuries without having two of the criteria of shaking. The extent of ocular injuries was reviewed in all cases. Ocular hemorrhages were found with increased frequency in cases with two or more of the criteria of shaking compared to cases with only impact mechanism of injury. Retinal hemorrhages continue to be a good marker of infants injured by vigorous, intentional shaking. Most, but not all, shaken babies have impact injuries as well. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Juveniles
Index Term(s): Autopsy; Child abuse; Child fatalities; Forensic medicine; Forensic pathology; Forensic sciences; Infanticide; Science and Technology; Statistics; Victims of Crime
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.