New Study Could Shed Light On Condition Behind SIDS

SIDS study

A Seattle doctor will test his theory that inner ear defects in babies cause an increased risk for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. According to the Seattle Times, Dr. Daniel Rubens of Seattle Children’s hospital will partner with the United Kingdom’s Lullaby Trust Dr. Peter Fleming of Bristol University for the two-year study.

The study is called OASIS, or the ‘Oto-Acoustics Signals in SIDS’ study.

new SIDS studyAs Dr. Rubens explains, the hypothesis is that an inner ear defect inhibits the biological signals that tell a baby to change positions if she or he is having trouble breathing. As a result, the baby doesn’t receive enough oxygen and suffocates.

In the OASIS study, researchers will analyze data from a hearing test given to all babies born in the U.K. Those records will be compared to data on infants whose deaths have been ruled a result of SIDS to see whether there’s a correlation between the two.

The United States doesn’t have a standard hearing test that’s given to all babies, so partnering with the U.K. organization facilitates this part of Rubens’ research.

Part of the funding for the study will come from American families whose children have died of SIDS.

“They really want an answer,” Rubens told the Seattle Times, “and it sparks them to become strong supporters now.”

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