Shaken Baby Syndrome - Treatment Overview
A child with
shaken baby syndrome is admitted to a hospital for
observation and treatment. Doctors will closely monitor the child. They watch
for signs of brain swelling and difficulty breathing, which can lead to the
death of brain cells or a
stroke. If signs of these problems occur, the child is
admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) where he or she is treated with
oxygen therapy and/or a
neurosurgeon may treat the bleeding and swelling in
the brain. Sometimes surgery is needed.
Other treatment depends on
the child's specific injuries. For example, a cast is applied to any broken
bones, and cuts are stitched or bandaged. A child who has
seizures is evaluated by a
neurologist who may prescribe anticonvulsant medicine.
Other types of specialists assess, treat, and monitor children who have
long-term care issues, such as those related to
intellectual disabilities or physical disabilities.
Other children in the care of the suspected abuser must be protected and
examined for injury.
A wide variety of
counseling therapies may be used for both children and
parents. Specific treatment depends on the type of abuse, who inflicted it, in
what setting it occurred, and the child's age. Health and legal professionals
work as a team to develop the most effective program using their training,
experience, and judgment.
Parents may regain custody
of their children after they have lost guardianship because of child abuse or
neglect. Whether they do so depends on the severity of the abuse or neglect and
a professional evaluation of their rehabilitation progress. In severe cases,
future contact between parent and child must be supervised. Sometimes parents
lose all parental rights.
Intentional injury is a crime. Police
perform site investigations and interview other caregivers. If intentional
injury is suspected, the child's caregiver will be charged and tried in a