A new study published in The Journal of Pediatrics shows that the vast majority of physicians in the United States (U.S.) agree that Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS) is a valid diagnosis. The study surveyed 628 multidisciplinary physicians at 10 leading children's hospitals in the U.S. who are frequently involved in the evaluation of injured children. Eighty-eight percent (88%) of respondents stated that SBS is a valid diagnosis, and 93% of respondents confirmed Abusive Head Trauma (AHT) as a valid diagnosis.
The study's findings refute the popular claim of a "controversy" surrounding the SBS/AHT diagnosis that is often reported in the media and cited in the courtroom. "Claims of substantial controversy within the medical community about shaken baby syndrome and abusive head trauma have created a chilling effect on child protection hearings and criminal prosecutions," says Sandeep Narang, MD, JD, lead author on the study, Division Head of Child Abuse Pediatrics at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, and Associate Professor of Pediatrics-Child Abuse at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "Our data show that shaking a young child is generally accepted by physicians to be a dangerous form of abuse."