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August 24, 1994

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Rib Fractures in InfantsA Postmortem Radiologic-Pathologic Study

Author Affiliations

From the Imaging Center for Child Abuse and Neglect, Department of Radiology (Drs Spevak, Kleinman, and Mss Belanger and Primack) and the Chief Medical Examiner's Office (Dr Richmond), University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester.

JAMA. 1994;272(8):617-618. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520080059044

Objective.  —To determine the incidence of rib fractures visible at autopsy or with postmortem radiographs after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in infants younger than 1 year.

Design.  —Retrospective review.

Setting.  —Medical examiner's office in a county consisting of a medium-sized city, towns, and rural areas.

Patients.  —Ninety-one infants (56 males, 35 females; mean age, 2.4 months; age range, 26 hours to 8.5 months) without evidence of child abuse who had undergone CPR before death.

Methods.  —Medical records, skeletal surveys, and autopsy results were reviewed.

Results.  —No patient had rib fractures.

Conclusions.  —Cardiopulmonary resuscitation is unlikely to cause rib fractures in infants.(JAMA. 1994;272:617-618)