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Author Topic: Baby stops breathing.  (Read 13616 times)

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Baby stops breathing.
« on: 21/08/2007 08:25:04 »
I think this is probably a question for Chris.

Sandra's sister's youngest kid, Amy, (she's 16 months) has stopped breathing 4 times. Each time it's been after she's banged the back of her head.

The 4th time was last night. She banged the back of her head and started crying. She was crying so hard she was having trouble inhaling. Then her back arched & she stopped breathing completely. Almost immediately she started to go blue. Nic sat her up & shook her a bit & she started breathing again.

Amy was 4 months old the 1st time. Then it happened again at 14 months, 15 months & last night. Nic has taken her to the doctor but all he said was that she'd grow out of it.

I'm no doctor but it sounds to me as if it's a bit more serious than something she'll grow out of. And as it happens after she bangs the back of her head, it makes me think the problem may be neurological. It's fortunate that there are 3 of us here to keep an eye on her as we can't take our eyes off her for more than a few seconds at a time just in case it happens again and we don't notice in time. As you all know, I don't like brats - but I don't want 1 dying on me!

The doctor Nic took Amy to was in Kent; but now she's living up here (Oxfordshire) we're going to take her to the local doctor.

Have you heard of anything like this before? Or have you any ideas what may be causing it?


 

Offline RD

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #1 on: 22/08/2007 16:09:36 »
Quote
This is a typical scene: A little child is playing happily, something upsets her, she exhales forcefully with a brief, shrill cry -- but she doesn't take another breath. You wait, but she still doesn't breathe. She looks as if she's crying, but no sound emerges. She begins to turn blue, her face strained, and still she is not breathing. Now she is unconscious, unresponsive, limp; the sight of her lifeless body is terrifying. Now her back arches, and her blue arms and legs begin to jerk uncontrollably. Your heart is pounding, frantic...

Breath-holding spells are perhaps the most frightening of the common, benign behaviors of childhood. Desperate parents often want to splash cold water on the child's face, start mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, or even begin CPR. Thankfully, breath-holding spells resolve spontaneously soon after the child passes out, and unless the fall hurts the child, she will be fine afterwards. The spell usually resolves within 30 to 60 seconds, with the child catching her breath and starting to cry or scream. Sometimes children will have real seizures as part of breath-holding spells, but these brief seizures are not harmful, and there is no increased risk of the child's developing a seizure disorder. Breath-holding spells occur in about 5% of children.

There is another, far less common, type of breath-holding spell, where the child turns deathly pale instead of blue or purple. These pallid spells are involuntary and unpredictable. They are brought on by a sudden startle, such as falling and striking the head. The child stops breathing, goes limp, passes out, and rapidly drains of color. Pallid breath-holding spells also resolve spontaneously. These children should be examined by a doctor, both to confirm the diagnosis, and to prescribe a preventative medicine if the spells are frequent or severe. There is an even less common type of breath-holding spell associated with a rare genetic condition called familial dysautonomia.

http://www.drgreene.com/21_557.html
« Last Edit: 22/08/2007 16:16:38 by RD »
 

Offline Karen W.

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #2 on: 22/08/2007 16:41:45 »
Good Information RD. I had a friend whose child was having this same problem . scared us all to death!.. Sometimes the injury happened and all of a sudden nothing no air no nothing color drained and replaced with that sinotic blue color and sure enough after passing out and not breathing the bodies own mechanisms kicked in and after what seemed like eternity to us, he would take a huge breath and begin breathing again on his own!

It is scary regardless of the cause!
 

Offline Paralyzer

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #3 on: 22/08/2007 17:45:21 »
Breath-holding Syndrome, or BHS, is fairly common, occuring in over 25% of children (I forget the exact figure, but, it is between 25 and 30%).  There are several other differential diagnoses that must be ruled out with BHS:  generalized seizures, cardiac issues, and BHS secondary to neurological or hematological issues. 

With seizures, color changes usually only occurs after loss of consciousness.  This is variable with cardiac issues, but color changes occur almost instantly with BHS.  Other clues that rule out seizures in this case include the lack of urinary incontinence, lack of myoclonic jerks, and the fact that this began in infancy.  Seizures and cardiac episodes also are usually not precipitated by any event; however, in this case, there is a clear precipitating event.

So, it looks like this is benign BHS.  While it is not likely, it is still possible that this is secondary to an underlying condition such as Arnold-Chiari Malformations, Riley-Day syndrome, and Rett syndrome.  These are pretty rare in and of themselves, and even more so as an underlying condition for BHS.  Iron-deficiency anemias and other hematological disorders can manifest as BHS, but this is very rare.

So, take her to your local doc, but she'll most probably grow out of this.  BHS is a self-limiting, benign disorder out of which nearly all children grow.  Just be there to comfort her and her parents. :)
 

Offline Karen W.

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #4 on: 22/08/2007 17:58:02 »
I had the cardiac problems with this before my first birthday!
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #5 on: 22/08/2007 21:59:43 »
RD & Paralyzer - thank you very much for that info.
 

Offline neilep

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #6 on: 22/08/2007 22:10:38 »
Wow !!...that is extremely scary and the information is excellent.

Doctor..I wish Amy well....lots of hugs for her !!
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #7 on: 22/08/2007 22:16:49 »
She's only here for another week - thank God! Grrrrrr, how I loathe babies  [:(!]
 

Offline neilep

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #8 on: 22/08/2007 22:20:28 »
Don't forget you're having my four !!...I can tell you're excited !!
 

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #9 on: 22/08/2007 23:15:20 »
Don't forget you're having my four !!...I can tell you're excited !!

I didn't know that you and DoctorBeaver were having babies together - congratulations.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #10 on: 22/08/2007 23:51:19 »
LOL Good one George!
 

Offline neilep

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #11 on: 23/08/2007 03:19:08 »
Don't forget you're having my four !!...I can tell you're excited !!

I didn't know that you and DoctorBeaver were having babies together - congratulations.

HEE HEE !!..LOL...

YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!

we'll have either Beeps or Sheavers !!
 

Offline Karen W.

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #12 on: 23/08/2007 06:35:53 »
lol lol!
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #13 on: 23/08/2007 08:45:34 »
Don't forget you're having my four !!...I can tell you're excited !!

I'm ready for them
 

Offline Karen W.

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Baby stops breathing.
« Reply #14 on: 23/08/2007 13:22:15 »
HEE HEE HEE!
 

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Baby stops breathing.
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