Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is one of the most tragic events
in medicine. The major hypotheses for the causes of SIDS are variants of the
presumption that the SIDS event results from abnormal cardiopulmonary regulation,
perhaps aggravated by environmental factors. Although multiple "immaturities"
or "abnormalities" of cardiorespiratory control in preterm, term, and young
infants have been demonstrated,1 the links
between those physiological responses and SIDS are tenuous. Nevertheless,
a home monitoring industry with the noble goal of preventing SIDS has now
operated for many years without either a sound scientific foundation for monitoring
or a clear demonstration that monitoring decreases SIDS.
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