Sudden infant death syndrome: current perspectives

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27 Citations (Scopus)


Despite significant reductions in incidence since the introduction of safe infant sleeping recommendations, sudden infant death syndrome is still the major cause of neonatal death in western countries. In the United States, over 2500 infants die suddenly and unexpectedly each year with nearly 100 deaths annually in Australia. Health professionals play a critical role in advising parents how to sleep their infants safely to minimise the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and sleeping accidents. Infants should be placed supine to sleep in a cot with a firm well-fitting mattress in the parental bedroom with no soft or loose bedding which could obstruct the airway. Exposure to smoking both before and after birth should be minimised. Breastfeeding should be encouraged, as should immunisation. Dummies can be recommended after breastfeeding has been established. This review outlines the evidence behind these recommendations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-438
Number of pages6
JournalInternal Medicine Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019


  • parental smoking
  • prematurity
  • prone sleeping
  • sudden infant death syndrome

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