Tuesday, Feb. 8
Shaken-Baby Syndrome Diagnosis Called Into Question
For decades these have been the hallmarks of shaken-baby syndrome: subdural hemorrhaging (bleeding in the space between the skull and the brain), retinal hemorrhaging (bleeding at the back of the eyes) and swelling in the brain. But in recent years, some doctors have become increasingly skeptical of that diagnosis, marking a “shift in mainstream medical opinion.” And now because the triad of telltale signs is the only medical evidence in the vast majority of shaken-baby prosecutions, the possibility that innocent people have been sent to jail is being raised. Emily Bazelon, senior editor at Slate and a contributor to the New York Times, wrote about shaken-baby syndrome in Sunday’s New York Times Magazine. She joins us.