Shaken baby syndrome


Shaken baby syndrome is a type of traumatic brain injury that occurs when a baby is violently shaken. This often happens in a desperate rage when the baby keeps crying and can't be calmed or soothed.


The children who survive being shaken, often have permanent damage. Think of physical and mental disabilities, epilepsy, sometimes blindness or hearing impairment," says pediatrician dr. Ingrid Russell.

"The head of the baby is relatively very heavy and big and the neck muscles are not very strong. What you see if the baby is shaken, is that the brains, in a layer of cerebrospinal fluid , will move up and down in the skull. The blood vessels and nerves tear. That leads to bleeding within the brain. "

                                       dr. Ingrid Russell

Shaking, already after three or five seconds, makes the fragile brain bounce back and forth inside the skull and causes bruising, swelling, and bleeding, which can lead to permanent, severe brain damage - some form of neurological or mental disability, such as cerebral palsy or mental retardation - or death. Damage to the retina of the eye can cause blindness.


Possible signs of a shaken baby syndrome: (mild and severe)

Do you see any of these symptoms acutely consult a doctor!

  • breathing problems
  • vomiting
  • decreased appetite
  • lack of smiling
  • seizure
  • weakness or stiffness in the arms or legs
  • drowsiness
  • unconsciousness
  • pale white or bluish skin
  • irritability, inconsolable
  • difficulty swallowing or sucking
  • bruising and swelling


Watch this (silent) 3D animation video; first you'll see normal bloodvessels and normal nerve signals, later the bleeding and defective nerve conduction →paralysis.



Transcript: Babies cry a lot a specially during the first five months of life; in fact a normal healthy baby may cry up to five hours or more each day.


Babies will cry the most at the age of two months, but have patience after the age of  two months your baby will begin to cry less each week.


Unfortunately crying is the number one reason babies are shaken or hurt by their caregivers. As a parent or caregiver  there will be times when you are tired and stressed, when your child cries for reasons you may not understand and when you are overwhelmed to the point the frustration rise.... 


Shaken baby syndrome or SBS, is a term often used by doctors and the public to describe abusive head trauma inflicted on infants and young children. Violently shaking an infant and blunt impact to a child's head can cause many serious and often fatal injuries.


Shaken baby syndrome is not caused by gentle age appropriate play such as bouncing a baby on a knee or rocking a baby, nor is it caused by shortfalls or CPR.


All it takes is a moment of lost control and violent shaking by a parent caregiver or  family friend for a child to become injured become permanently disabled or even die. That's why the slogan is called, Take a break !! Don't shake ..


Have a plan! Put the baby in a safe place, walk away, calm down. Take a break. cal someone for help.



100s of babies die every year from this preventable health problem. Univerity Hospital is using a high tech doll do demonstrate how adult frustration can damage lives in a matter of seconds.


They developed a simulator where the damaged areas light up when shaking the baby-simulator. See the announcement of this simulator-baby here ...

See the show of 'The Doctors' showing this high tech doll Realityworks' RealCare Shaken Baby here...




The National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome

Shaken Baby Syndrome Information Page: National Institute of ...

Shaken baby syndrome | BabyCenter

CDC | Prevent Shaken Baby Syndrome | Traumatic Brain Injury | Injury Center - shakenbaby.htm