The information on this webpage shows possible correlations between childhood vaccines and many cases of SIDS. (Citations are listed at the bottom of this page.) This website also contains numerous Personal Stories as told by anguished parents who are absolutely convinced of this connection. Your comments are welcome.
A 1994 study found that children diagnosed with asthma (a respiratory ailment not unlike SIDS) were five times more likely than not to have received pertussis vaccine.(110) Another study found that babies die at a rate eight times greater than normal within three days after getting a DPT shot.(111) The three primary doses of DPT are given at two months, four months, and six months. About 85 percent of SIDS cases occur at one through six months, with the peak incidence at age two to four months.(112)
In a recent scientific study of SIDS, episodes of apnea (cessation of breathing) and hypopnea (abnormally shallow breathing) were measured before and after DPT vaccinations. "Cotwatch" (a precise breathing monitor) was used, and the computer printouts it generated (in integrals of the weighted apnea-hypopnea density -- WAHD) were analyzed. The data clearly shows that vaccination caused an extraordinary increase in episodes where breathing either nearly ceased or stopped completely. These episodes continued for months following vaccinations. Dr. Viera Scheibner, the author of the study, concluded that "vaccination is the single most prevalent and most preventable cause of infant deaths." (See the diagram below).(113)
In another study of 103 children who died of SIDS, Dr. William Torch, of the University of Nevada School of Medicine at Reno, found that more than two-thirds had been vaccinated with DPT prior to death. Of these, 6.5 percent died within 12 hours of vaccination; 13 percent within 24 hours; 26 percent within three days; and 37, 61, and 70 percent within one, two, and three weeks, respectively (See the diagram below). He also found that SIDS frequencies have a bimodal-peak occurrence at two and four months -- the same ages when initial doses of DPT are administered to infants.(114)
The following excerpt is from a statement made by a distraught grandmother testifying before the Committee on Labor and Human Resources, regarding vaccine injury compensation:
"My name is Donna Gary. I am a constituent of Senator Kennedy´s from Massachusetts. Our family should have celebrated our very first granddaughter´s first birthday last month. Instead, we will commemorate the anniversary of her death at the end of this month.
"Our granddaughter, Lee Ann, was just 8 weeks old when her mother took her to the doctor for her routine checkup. That included, of course, her first DPT inoculation and oral polio vaccine. "In all her entire 8 weeks of life this lovable, extremely alert baby had never produced such a blood-curdling scream as she did at the moment the shot was given. Neither had her mother ever before seen her back arch as it did while she screamed. She was inconsolable. Even her daddy could not understand Lee Ann´s uncharacteristic screaming and crying.
"Four hours later Lee Ann was dead. `Crib death,´ the doctor said -- `SIDS.´ `Could it be connected to the shot?´ her parents implored.´ `No.´ `But she just had her first DPT shot this afternoon. Could there possibly be any connection to it?´ `No, no connection at all,´ the emergency room doctor said definitely.
"My husband and I hurried to the hospital the following morning after Lee Ann´s death to talk with the pathologist before the autopsy. We wanted to make sure he was alerted to her DPT inoculation such a short time before her death -- just in case there was something else he could look for to make the connection. He was unavailable to talk with us. We waited two-and-a-half hours. Finally, we got to talk to another doctor after the autopsy had been completed. He said it was `SIDS.´
"In the months before Lee Ann was born I regularly checked with a friend as to the state of her grandchild´s condition. He is nearly a year-and-a-half older than Lee Ann. On his first DPT shot he passed out cold for 15 minutes, right in the pediatrician´s office. `Normal reaction for some children,´ the pediatrician reassured. The parents were scared, but they knew what a fine doctor they had. They trusted his judgment.
"When it was time for the second shot they asked `Are you sure it´s all right? Is it really necessary?´ Their pediatrician again reassured them. He told them how awful it was to experience, as he had, one of his infant patient´s bout with whooping cough. That baby had died.
"They gave him his second DPT shot that day. He became brain-damaged.
"This past week I had an opportunity to read through printed copies of the hearings of this committee. I am dismayed to learn that this same talk has been going on for years, and nothing has seemed to progress to incorporate what seems so obvious and necessary to keep from destroying any more babies, and to compensate financially those who have already been damaged for life.
"How accurate are our statistics on adverse reactions to vaccines when parents have been told, are still being told, `No connection to the shot, no connection at all?´
"What about the mother I have recently talked with who has a 4-year-old brain-damaged son? On all three of his DPT shots he had a convulsion in the presence of the pediatrician. `No connection,´ the pediatrician assured.
"I talked with a father in a town adjoining ours whose son died at the age of 9 weeks, several months before our own granddaughter´s death. It was the day after his DPT inoculation. `SIDS´ is the statement on the death certificate.
"Are the statistics that the medical world loves to quote to say, `There is no connection,´ really accurate, or are they based on poor diagnoses, poor recordkeeping? What is being done to provide a safer vaccine? Who is overseeing? Will it be the same scientists and doctors who have been overseeing in the past? How much longer does the public have to wait? How are physicians and clinics going to be held accountable to see that parents are informed of the possible reactions? And how are those children who should not receive the vaccine to be identified before they are damaged -- or dead?
"Today is the National Day of Prayer. My prayer is that this committee be instrumental in doing what needs to be done -- and soon. May there not be yet another year pass by with more children afflicted, and some dead, because those who can do so refuse to `make the right connection."(115)
Vaccines: Are They Really Safe and Effective?
A Parent´s Guide to Childhood Shots
by Neil Z. Miller
110. Michel Odent, et al., "Pertussis Vaccination and Asthma: Is There a Link?" J. of the American Medical Association, (Aug 24/31, 1994), pp. 592-3.
111. J. M. Fine and L. C. Chen, "Confounding in studies of adverse reactions to vaccines," American Journal of Epidemiology, 136, (1992), pp. 121-35.
112. See Note 105, p. 51.
113. Dr. Viera Scheibner and Leif Karlsson, "Association Between Non-Specific Stress Syndrome, DPT Injections, and Cot Death," (2nd Immunization Conference, Canberra, Australia, May 27-29, 1991).
114. W. C. Torch, "Diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus (DPT) immunization: A potential cause of the sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)," (Amer. Academy of Neurology, 34th Annual Meeting, Apr 25 - May 1, 1982), Neurology 32(4), pt. 2.
115. Vaccine Injury Compensation. Hearing Before the Committee on Labor and Human Resources; 98th Congress, 2nd Session, (May 3, 1984), pp. 63-67.
Our beautiful daughter, K..., was born on 14 Feb 1998 and died on 17 April 98. What was unusual was that earlier on the day she died I had taken her to the Military Base hospital for her two month checkup. The doctor told me that she was just perfect. Then the doctor said that she needed four shots. I replied Four!? She assured me that it was completely normal and that it was better to give her all at such an early age (because she wouldn´t remember the shots). That evening after feeding K... we laid her down to sleep and checked on her 45 minutes later and discovered her dead. I told the police, coroner and investigators that I thought it was the shots because she was perfectly fine that day and before the shots. But after 3 weeks we finally got the answer from the autopsy that it was indeed SIDS. To this day I believe that it was the shots and no one can convince me otherwise.