NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Findings from a European study suggest that about 48 percent of crib deaths are attributable to the baby sleeping on its front or side. Sleeping in a room other than the parent's room was linked to 36 percent of cases, and 16 percent were linked to bed sharing.
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), also called crib death or cot death, is the leading cause of death in babies less than a year old. Most SIDS deaths occur when babies are between two and four months of age, and more often in boys.
To better understand the risk factors for SIDS, Dr. R. G. Carpenter, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and colleagues conducted studies in 20 regions in Europe. Data from 745 SIDS cases and 2411 living babies were included in the analysis.
The researchers' findings are reported in this week's issue of the medical journal The Lancet.