May 1967

Sudden Death in Infants, Proceedings of the Conference on Causes of Sudden Death in Infants, Sept, 1963, Seattle, Washington.

Author Affiliations

Edited by Ralph J. Wedgwood, MD, and Earl P. Benditt, MD. Price, $1.75. Pp 153. Superintendent of Documents, US Printing Office, 1966.

Am J Dis Child. 1967;113(5):631. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1967.02090200163030

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"Cot deaths" or sudden, unexpected death in infants without an obviously preceding disease is usually limited to infants under 1 year of age and more often under 6 months of age. This is a common condition, and in the past 20 years a number of variably careful but unsatisfactory studies on the cause of this syndrome have been published. At the present time large groups of experts in laboratory medicine and various of the disciplines of pediatrics and epidemiology are concerned with determining the causes of death of these unfortunate infants. To date, virological, sociopsychological, bacteriological, anatomic, and pathological studies have been unsuccessful in delineating a common cause or even a group of common causes of significance. Unfortunately for the pathologists, as so succinctly stated by Landing, "The autopsy is a miserable device for investigating the physiological final common pathways of the mechanism of death." The excellent and careful studies

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