American Academy of Pediatrics Revises Recommendations to Reduce the Incidence of Infant Death

The American Academy of Pediatrics Task Force on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome recently released a revised policy statement providing evidence based best practices to reduce infant death. The major changes are the use of pacifiers, side sleep position, and bed sharing. The following is a summary of the recommendations:

  • Place infants on their back to sleep for naps and nighttime, in a safe crib, never on a couch, chair or other soft surfaces.
  • Use a safety approved firm crib mattress covered by a fitted sheet
  • Keep all soft objects out of crib such as stuffed toys, comforters, pillows, and quilts.
  • No smoking around baby.
  • Do not share a bed with your baby. Baby can sleep in the same room as parents, but should have its own separate sleep surface.
  • Use a clean, dry pacifier when placing baby to sleep. Breastfed infants should not be offered a pacifier for the first month until breastfeeding has been established.
  • Avoid overheating by dressing the infant appropriately for the environment, with no more that 1 layer more than an adult would wear to be comfortable.
  • SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Expansion of Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment, Task Force of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Pediatrics 2011;128;1030; originally published online October 17, 2011; DOI: 10.1542/peds.2011-2284

Research Briefs

Preterm Delivery and Age of SIDS Death
Purpose: The aim of the study is to (1) reexamine risk factors for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Conclusions: Preterm birth continues to be a strong risk factor for SIDS after controlling for fetal growth. With increasing gestational age, mean age of SIDS death decreases considerably, with the postnatal age of death of very preterm infants, 6 weeks later than that of term infants.

Second-Trimester Maternal Serum Levels of Alpha-Fetoprotein and the Subsequent Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
This study investigates whether second-trimester maternal alpha-fetoprotein levels are associated with the future risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and stillbirth. Researchers conducted this study in Scotland by linking a prenatal screening database for women with databases of maternity, perinatal death, and birth and death certifications of assess the association. The results of the study indicate that there is a direct association between second-trimester maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein levels and the risk of SIDS, which may be mediated in part through impaired fetal growth and preterm birth.

Related Research/Topics

The Changing Concept of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: Diagnostic Coding Shifts, Controversies Regarding the Sleeping Environment, and New Variables to Consider in Reducing Risk

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Study Confirms Safety of Placing Infants to Sleep on their Backs Infant Who Sleep on Back Have Fewer Fevers and Ear Infections

Heat Stress and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Incidence: A United States Population Epidemiologic Study

Sleep Position of Low Birth Weight Infants

Effect of Prone Sleeping on Circulatory Control in Infants

Changing Infants' Sleep Position Increases Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (unaccustomed prone sleeping)

Potential to Prevent Carbon Dioxide Rebreathing of Commercial Products Marketed to Reduce Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Risk

SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Updated Recommendations for a Safe Sleep Environment
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