Article Text


Apparent life threatening events and infant holding practices.
  1. R W Byard,
  2. R H Burnell
  1. Department of Paediatrics, University of Adelaide, Australia.


    Two 4 week old infants are reported who suffered apparent life threatening events (ALTE) while being cradled in adult arms. The events, which could be reproduced under controlled circumstances, were not associated with any struggling by the infants. Alteration of infant holding practices in both cases resulted in cessation of the events. A case of cardiorespiratory arrest during breast feeding in an 8 week old infant that was unnoticed by her mother is also described. These cases suggest that certain infants may not respond normally to airway occlusion while being held or nursed, and show that careful study of the events surrounding ALTE may reveal contributing environmental factors. If ALTE occur around feeding time, observation of how caretakers place the infant during and after feeding may be informative.

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