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NCJ Number: 219262 Find in a Library
Title: Infant Death Scene Investigation and the Assessment of Potential Risk Factors for Asphyxia: A Review of 209 Sudden Unexpected Infant Deaths
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:52  Issue:4  Dated:July 2007  Pages:924-929
Author(s): Melissa A. Pasquale-Styles M.D.; Patricia L. Tackitt R.N., M.S.; Carl J. Schmidt M.D.
Date Published: July 2007
Page Count: 6
Publisher: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/ 
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper reports on the results of thorough scene investigations of 209 sudden and unexpected infant deaths (ages 3 days to 12 months) conducted by the Wayne County Medical Examiner Office (Detroit, MI.) from 2001 to 2004.
Abstract: This study suggests that asphyxia plays a greater role in many sudden infant deaths than has been historically attributed to it. Based on position of the infants' bodies at discovery (overlays, entrapments, strangulations, noses and mouths blocked, and or heads covered, a minimum of 108 infants (51.7 percent) died of asphyxia (too little oxygen and too much carbon dioxide in the blood). Sixty-four of these scenarios with the greatest index of suspicion for asphyxia occurred in the 2-4 month age group, with 39 occurring in the 2-month age group alone. This is a conservative estimate of asphyxia deaths, since it does not take into account infants who died in high-risk sleep situations such as bed-sharing with more than one person on a bed or couch but with no witnessed overlay and no obstruction of the nose/mouth upon discovery of the infant. A prone position with the face down and nose and mouth obstructed was observed at discovery for 64 cases (30.6 percent). In a few cases, the infant was prone but lacked any demonstrable obstruction of the nose and mouth. Deaths of Black infants substantially outnumbered the deaths of White infants, and male infant deaths outnumbered female infant deaths in each of the two racial categories. The disparity did not correlate with the demographic distribution of race and sex in the population of the jurisdiction of the Wayne County Medical Examiner Office. 3 tables and 25 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Asphyxiation; Death investigations; Infant (0-4); Michigan; Sudden infant death syndrome
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=241054

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