Article Text

PDF

Association is not the same as causation
  1. MARTIN RICHARDSON, Consultant Paediatrician
  1. Peterborough District Hospital
  2. Peterborough, UK
  3. martin.richardson{at}pbh-tr.anglox.nhs.uk

    Statistics from Altmetric.com

    Editor,—The paper by Kerr et al describes an association between SIDS and colonisation withH pylori. In the introduction, the authors state that both SIDS and colonisation with H pylori are known to be linked with poor socioeconomic status and overcrowding. This clearly suggests that some common factor (possibly smoking, possibly something else) may predispose to both conditions. Yet, in the discussion, the authors ignore this possibility and prefer to postulate on how H pylori might cause sudden unexpected death. Not only is this approach unscientific, it is also irresponsible. The proposed causation has been taken up by the media and I have already been asked to see a mother who is receiving eradication therapy for H pylori. She fears that her child may already be infected and will die from cot death.

    View Abstract

    Request permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.