Computer system designed to prevent SIDS deaths
According to the latest statistics, every year approximately 2,500 babies die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) in the U.S. alone, with thousands more falling victim to it around the world. In typical cases, an infant passes away in their sleep, with no apparent explanation. While various theories have been put forward, the exact cause of SIDS is unknown. While not offering an answer to the mystery, two students from Israel's Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) are working on a computer system, that could keep more babies from becoming SIDS statistics.
Called "BabyBeat," the system was created by BGU Departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences students Tomer Apel and Anava Finesilver. It incorporates a consumer video camera that is hooked up to a home computer, running the BabyBeat software.
The camera monitors the baby's skin tone, watching for a specific change that is imperceptible to the human eye. That change in skin tone is caused by a sudden decrease in heart rate, which is believed to precede SIDS deaths. An algorithm in the software estimates the baby's pulse based on the camera's skin tone information, and recognizes when that pulse dramatically slows down. The computer then sounds an alarm, both waking up the baby, and alerting its parents.
Although it's still in the developmental stage, Apel and Finesilver hope that BabyBeat can ultimately be commercially produced and marketed.
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A pressure sensitive mattress pad that detects pulse and breathing activity would be a more robust solution. It would not require a camera with a clear line of sight to skin. This would reduce any chance of false alarm as long as the baby stays on the pad.
My son was saved by my wife suddenly waking up for no apparent reason at 5am and rushing in to check him. He wasn\'t breathing and was blue. We resuscitated him and called an ambulance. Eventually he came out of ICU and is now 8 years old and wonderfully normal. While telepathy or divine intervention worked for us - it doesn\'t for thousands of people who endure the most traumatic of all events - the loss of their child.
So keep at it guys - you will genuinely save lives!
The monitor can be wireless and really tiny which could trigger an alarm louder enough to wake the baby. It could even send an SMS to the doctor or the emergency service. But not just looking at the skin. There are many chances in the real world that the camera watching the baby\'s skin tone, misinterpret and triggers no alarm.
In 1994 they implemented their solutions in New Zealand, and since 1994 there has been ZERO SIDS deaths when parents followed their guidelines. ZERO. (See http://www.thecauseofsids.com/Cause_of_SIDS_Jane_Sheppard.htm)
How many more major research universities continue to milk this health scam? How much longer are we going to keep the very simple solution from parents world-wide under the guise of propagating further \"research\"? How many other public crises are being perpetuated simply to keep research funding flowing (anthropogenic climate change anyone?)
I have heard that, statistically (though I can\'t remember where from, but I think from British cot death advice) a child re-using a mattress has a higher risk of cot death.
I\'ll be trying to get hold of one of these covers. I\'m from NZ originally and remember well we had the highest cot death rate in the western world.
In this case, I would say, you can\'t argue with results. A 17 year national trial has to be compelling. It\'s about as absolute as you can get, so there\'s no excuse for opening up to the idea and trialling something so simple, and safe, elsewhere.
Established science and associated scientists, organisations and regulators often can\'t cope with credible scientific debate on their established views. They can be just as stuck in old thinking as any layperson, and government in big business always put themselves first, before any moral decency to protect people\'s health. Money and saving face are more important. A couple of examples would be the slowness in acknowledging asbestos and tobacco risks once they started to become known.
The official position of authorities in NZ is not to support the theory.
I inferred that \"they\" was to mean New Zealand as a general population. i.e. \"In 1994 they implemented their solutions\". I thought it was in relation to a national program. In fact, there is no official backing for the theory, nor acknowledgement that it has contributed to a fall in the SIDS rate in NZ.
I think the theory is plausible, but I couldn\'t conclude it\'s proven ... nor do I conclude it\'s disproved.
I find it hard to believe that results, as cited, could be ignored by the rest of the world, but much less so the New Zealanders themselves. Finding the cause of and a solution to something so horrible would make New Zealanders *extremely* proud, and Dr. Sprott a national hero. He\'d probably end up on stamps or currency some time soon.
I\'m not closing the book on this theory. As I said, I think it plausible, and it does fit all the known risk factors, but I think it\'s not the slam dunk that it\'s made out to be by it\'s supporters. I think a lot of the criticisms of it are very weak, though, too. An emotive issue.