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Inflicted Childhood Neurotrauma

Fiske, Elizabeth A. MSN, APRN, BC; Hall, Joanne M. PhD, RN, FAAN

doi: 10.1097/01.ANS.0000319567.14503.e5
Article Available Online Only for the April-June Issue

In this article, we review literature related to inflicted childhood neurotrauma (ICN). We discuss the rationale for use of the term “ICN,” rather than the more benign, commonly used “shaken baby syndrome.” The change in language alters the discourse about a potentially lethal outcome or lifelong problem for survivors. A description of ICN is followed by a discussion of ethical parameters and obligations of those who care for infants and children and professionals who are sentinels to these events such as law enforcement officials, nurses, physicians, and social workers.

Rationale is presented for use of the term “inflicted childhood neurotrauma” rather than the more commonly used “shaken baby syndrome.” The change in language alters the discourse about a potentially lethal outcome or lifelong problem for survivors and focuses on ethical parameters and obligations of caregivers and professionals who serve for infants and children.

Carson-Newman College, Jefferson City, Tennessee (Ms Fiske); and University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee (Dr Hall).

Corresponding Author: Elizabeth A. Fiske, MSN, APRN, BC, Carson-Newman College, Jefferson City, Tennessee, C-N Box 71883, Jefferson City, TN 37760 (efiske@cn.edu).

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.