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News Archives 4741-4760
Number Title Post Date
4741 Disabled children applying for bus passes abused on council's 'wall of shame' 10/05/2011 14:06:56
4742 Manning paying for busting US 'illegal, stupid foreign policy' 10/05/2011 14:15:27
4743 Join deadly BioLab terrorist target rally, central London 18 May 10/05/2011 14:19:51
4744 Maryanne Godboldo's daughter released as state vs. parents wrangle over Risperdal & vaccines 10/05/2011 14:24:37
4745 Seven girls die in controversial cervical cancer vaccine trial 10/05/2011 14:28:30
4746 Servier denies concealing 2,000 dead risk with Mediator diabetes drug 10/05/2011 14:31:35
4747 Mail Policy for PFC Bradley Manning 11/05/2011 09:06:33
4748 Assange awarded Sydney peace medal 11/05/2011 09:08:46
4749 Drug regulator accused of harming patients with commercial secrecy fraud 11/05/2011 09:10:36
4750 Study Finds NSAID Treatment Promotes Significant CV Death Increase 11/05/2011 09:13:37
4751 HPV vaccine: Groups demand action including Gates Foundation compensation 11/05/2011 09:17:42
4752 U.S. Federal Court Compensated 83 Vaccine-Injured Autistic Children 11/05/2011 09:20:21
4753 Activist who supports soldier in WikiLeaks case sues U.S. over seizure of laptop 16/05/2011 12:44:30
4754 Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus-related Virus-associated Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Reveals a Distinct Inflammatory Signature 16/05/2011 12:53:32
4755 Pfizer Sets Aside $772M To Pay For Prempro Breast Cancer Suits 16/05/2011 12:57:32
4756 Drugged Culture - America's most prescribed psychiatric drugs 16/05/2011 13:00:22
4757 Prominent Neurologist Deplores Misuse of Antipsychotics 16/05/2011 13:03:43
4758 Policy draft backs new, expensive vaccines 16/05/2011 13:06:06
4759 New doubts over shaken-baby evidence 16/05/2011 13:13:28
4760 David Southall - A Very Disingenuous Doctor and a Very Large Elephant 16/05/2011 13:19:34

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New doubts over shaken-baby evidence
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New doubts over shaken-baby evidence

12 May 2011 by Andy Coghlan

Magazine issue 2812.


"Proof" of abuse in doubt

WATER-FILLED cysts in the brain of a dead baby should not be taken as proof that the infant has been shaken to death. New findings show that cysts are also found in babies known to have died of innocent causes.

If the brain is starved of oxygen - because of a breathing problem or a blood clot caused by trauma, for example - it will swell up. A study of swollen brains in 20 babies who died aged 5 months or less showed that the longer they had survived before dying, the more likely they were to develop water-filled cysts between the cerebral cortex and the inner regions of the brain.

"While these cysts may be seen as a consequence of trauma, they do not appear to be due to mechanical tissue disruption, and may occur after brain swelling from any cause," says Waney Squier at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, UK (Early Human Development, DOI: 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2011.03.003). Squier's team suggests that the cysts arise because the brains of young babies have yet to fully develop the plumbing needed to drain excess fluid.

The paper is the latest to cast doubt on post-mortem evidence that has till now been taken to show that abuse has taken place. Last year, evidence emerged to challenge the use of the "triad"Movie Camera - the combination of brain swelling, and bleeding on the surface of the brain and at the back of the eyes - as evidence in such cases.

In January the Crown Prosecution Service in England and Wales issued new guidelines stating that the triad would no longer be sufficient to show that a dead infant had suffered "shaken baby syndrome". As well as requiring additional evidence of possible abuse before a prosecution is started, the guidelines also rename "shaken baby syndrome" as "non-accidental head injury".

"Squier has shown that sub-cortical fluid collections are not [always] the result of primary trauma to the cortex," says Julie Mack, a pathologist studying infant brain injury at Pennsylvania State Hershey Medical Center.

One prominent radiologist in the UK who preferred not to be named says he agrees that the cysts can have innocent causes. But he questions the validity of the new study, adding that he seldom sees evidence of cysts in MRI scans of living infants with swollen brains.

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Related Links:
* Supreme Court - medical 'expert' witnesses can now be challenged and sued
Medical News Today
* Non Accidental Head Injury Cases (NAHI, formerly referred to as Shaken Baby Syndrome [SBS]) - Prosecution Approach
Crown Prosecution Service
* Half of all parents tried over shaken baby syndrome have been wrongly convicted - Police interference
Angela Levin, Mail on Sunday
* 'Shaken Baby Syndrome' Probe Urges Injustice Cases Review
Chris Bentley, Attorney General, Government of Ontario
* Shaken Baby Syndrome Controversy Turns Toxic
BBC File on 4
* More USA Doctors Questioning 'Shaken-Baby Syndrome'
NPR
* Shaken Baby Syndrome Story & Metropolitan Police Witness Interference
Lisa Blakemore Brown, Psychologist
* Metropolitan Police Accused Of Trying To Campaign Against Shaken Baby Witnesses
Andrew Hosken, BBC Radio 4 Today Programme
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