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Topic: SIDS and Bacteria


Bacterial Infections and SIDS

In May 2008, British researchers announced a possible connection between Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli (E. coli) infections and SIDS. In this study, samples of bacteria were taken from 470 infants who had died before their first birthday and examined. Of the group, researchers discovered higher levels of bacteria present in babies whose deaths were unexplained and attributed to SIDS than in those whose deaths were attributed to causes that could be explained.

It was noted that around 8 to 10 weeks of age, a common age for SIDS occurrences, babies normally start to lose the antibodies they were born with, which were obtained through the placenta. Because infants in the study had not yet built up enough of their own antibodies, they might not have been able to fight off infection. It is important to note, however, that this connection is still considered a preliminary finding that needs further research. There is not enough evidence to say that bacterial infections can cause SIDS.

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