Shaken baby syndrome (SBS) is also called Abusive head trauma (AHT). This means an injury to a child's brain as a result of child abuse. It is never okay to shake or throw a young child. It may not leave any obvious sign of injury, but it can cause serious long-term problems or even death. This often occurs when a baby won't stop crying and a caregiver loses control of his or her emotions. Parents can help prevent this problem by learning healthy ways to relieve stress and anger. It destroys a child's brain cells and prevents his or her brain from getting enough oxygen.
Prognosis-In comparison with accidental traumatic brain injury in infants, shaken baby injuries have a much worse prognosis. Damage to the retina of the eye can cause blindness. The majority of infants who survive severe shaking will have some form of neurological or mental disability, such as cerebral palsy or cognitive impairment, which may not be fully apparent before 6 years of age. Children with shaken baby syndrome may require lifelong medical care.
Shaken baby syndrome symptoms and signs include extreme irritability, difficulty staying awake, breathing problems, poor eating, tremors, vomiting, pale or bluish skin, seizures, paralysis and coma. Some injuries are not noticeable such as bleeding in the brain and eye, damage to the spinal cord and neck and fractures of the ribs, skull and bones. In mild cases, a child may appear normal after being shaken, but over time he or she may develop health, learning or behavior problems.