THE CAUSE OF COT DEATH AND HOW TO PREVENT IT(65 Posts)
Interview with T.J Sprott About SIDS Prevention
that anyone could actully believe all that
" Smoking was very common in Britain in the 1930s and 1940s, but cotdeath was virtually non-existent. " ermmm probably because it wasn't recorded as such......not that it 'didn't' happen
i do belive it was lower in those times becaue the babys had a lot more fresh air and even if the mother did smoke there were usualy windows open to let the air flow freely plus you must remember then women were a lot more healtheir than a lot are now and healthier women with stronger emune systems seemed to have bigger babys whos emune system developed faster which i suppose helped them fight more germs that were in the air
Mummytojames - I wouldn't get to 'caught up' on this thread - nannyoakley has only made 3 posts on here (unless shes' changed her name) all have been linked to this story................
Gwenick, ( that anyone could actully believe all that)smoking around babies is not good and I think most parents would agree.
What Jim Sprott is pointing out is that Smoking was very common in Britain in the 1930s and 1940s, but cot death was virtually non-existent. The statistics for that time prove this.
I would be interested in knowing what you think about the fact that Arsenic, Phosphorous and Antimony have been used in the manufacturing of cot mattresses and baby bedding by way of fire retardants? And what affect do you think such a mixture of chemicals can have on a baby?
Fungal growth is well known to flourish in any mattress over time and this alone can cause problems to us humans, this is a well established fact.
Plastics and plasicisers are regularly used in the manufacture of baby goods, including cot mattresses and many manufacturers such as toy companies have decided not to use plastics and plasticisers which have been proven to leak chemicals which can harm babies. There have been many campaigns highlighting such dangers over the past 4-5 years and thankfully they have been successful.
The reason I made this posting was to highlight these dangers and to let the reader/s know that something simple can be done to prevent cot death. Mattress Wrapping for cot death prevention has been adopted by tens of thousands of parents and has been 100% successful.
Many babies have died of cot death where parents
followed orthodox cot death prevention advice; but there has been no
reported cot death on a correctly wrapped mattress. Unlike orthodox advice,
mattress-wrapping has a 100% success record in cot death prevention.
So if babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve gases" why aren't more babies dying of SIDS? If babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve gases" why aren't mattress manufacturers doing something about it (hardly in ther interest to produce mattresses which kill their customer's babies)? If babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve gases" why has this theory been discounted by leading researchers into cot death?
This seems to be a mission of yours - look here you are
This is a 2004 article (from New Zealand, incidentally)discounting Dr.Sprott's theory here
And most telling of all - look, Dr. Sprott invented a mattress wrapper and wants to flog it to worried parents. So no possible vested interest in pushing this as a theory here
This is just ill-researched and unfounded scaremongering.
Thank you nannyoakley for bringing this one up. Not sure what the contraversy is about concerning the fact that your posts centre round this one issue - many of us have a particular issue at heart that we focus on for a while - dont think this makes your posts less interesting and valid IMHO, also a bit harsh to suggest that your post is not worth bothering with becuase you are a relative newcomer - that comment smacks of prejudice to me.
Although very interesting, the fact that he is selling a product directly linked is a bit worrying - makes you want to question the research carefully when there is a commercial interest. Also, interesting link about the disputing of his research. However, I do think he has a really important point about quality of mattresses and potential lethal problems with toxic fumes. I didnt think that this was so new - we have been told for ages not to reuse mattresses as they can contain this harmful fungi. When I questionned my mw about this for DD2, she told me to ignore it and re-use my old mattress just as long as I washed the outer cover. I wonder about that advice now and wish perhaps that I had bought a new one - silly risk to take considering the minor cost involved in buying a new mattress but I believed in my mw and trusted her knowledge of up to date research.
I think that the back to back campaign should not be ignored or that smoking is hardly a good idea around a child. Not sure about this wrapping thing, but buying a new mattress and keeping it clean and dry sounds very sensibel to me. Surely all of these considerations are in the benefit of the child, no-one knows absolutely 100% how to eliminate all risk for SIDS so any logical suggestions and opinions should be explored and considered.
Regarding the quote
So if babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve gases"
why aren't more babies dying of SIDS? If babies are sleeping on mattresses
which generate "toxic nerve gases" why aren't mattress manufacturers doing
something about it (hardly in their interest to produce mattresses which
their customer's babies)? If babies are sleeping on mattresses which
generate "toxic nerve gases" why has this theory been discounted by leading
researchers into cot death?
The answers are as follows:
1) So if babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve
gases" why aren't more babies dying of SIDS?
Ans: Because all the circumstances for gas generation in lethal amount must
exist simultaneously, presence of chemicals, infestation with active fungus,
moist conditions, re-use of mattresses, warmish conditions, use of fabric
softener on bedding and clothing, in some instances elevated temperature due
to baby having a cold, or having been vaccinated recently and being slightly
feverish, and so on.
But the point is meaningless anyway...one might as well say "Why don't more
babies die in car accidents, or by electrocution in the home, or by falling
down stairs? Cot death is caused by accidental poisoning, and thus is
2) If babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate "toxic nerve gases"
why aren't mattress manufacturers doing something about it (hardly in their
interest to produce mattresses which kill their customer's babies)?
Ans: In UK they are "doing something about it", and most if not all
mattresses now made in UK are free from the chemicals (the only country to
do so except for the BabeSafe mattress in New Zealand. The change in UK
came about because of publicity on the Toxic Gas Explanation in 1994, and by
about 1996~7 chemicals-free mattresses were readily available. The results
in UK have been impressive, annual cot deaths down from about 400 or so each
year to about 150. And furthermore, this reduction has occurred among
second and later babies, as would be predicted by the toxic gas explanation
(re-use of mattresses containing the chemicals greatly increases the risk of
3) Advice being given to If babies are sleeping on mattresses which generate
"toxic nerve gases" why has this theory been discounted by leading
researchers into cot death?
Ans: Who are the so-called "leading researchers"? The "leading
researchers" (collectively) in this field have been researching cot death
for over 40 years, and have failed to find the cause. They have
(collectively) written over 5500 papers published in medical and related
journals, yet still have failed. They are not "experts" because they cannot
explain what they purport to be "expert" in. The answer has been "staring
them in the face" for over 20 years, but they didn't have the ability to see
it. But when two scientists (one in UK and the other in NZ) put their minds
to the problem, they solved it in a few years in their spare time, (and
neither has sought, or received, any reward whatever for what they achieved.
4) This seems to be a mission of yours -
Ans: Yes...it is a mission, and it's only purpose is to save the lives of
babies. And it has saved the lives of babies, thousands of them. The free
and simple advice would save the life of every cot death baby. Look at what
has happened in NZ...not a single cot death when parents have followed Dr
Sprott's advice over the ten years he has been promoting mattress-wrapping;
and the NZ cot death rate has plummeted.
5) This is a 2004 article (from New Zealand, incidentally)discounting
Dr.Sprott's theory here
Ans: Not "discounting" just obstructing. There is opposition in NZ as well,
but it is very silent now.
6) And most telling of all - look, Dr. Sprott invented a mattress wrapper
and wants to flog it to worried parents.
Ans; You should get the facts. Dr Sprott invented BabeSafe covers, and
then passed the designs to a major company in the babycare field, and they
made the covers and sold them. They offered Dr Sprott a royalty on sales of
the covers, but he declined this offer. He has operated the Cot Life 2000
information programme for over 10 years, entirely at his own expense, and
continues to do so. And also Mr Richardson has never received any financial
reward. So don't talk about "vested interest" as far as Sprott or
Richardson are concerned. If you want to see "vested interest" look at the
so-called "cot death researchers" and all the millions they have received,
and continue to receive while they continue to deny the toxic gas
explanation. No wonder they oppose it!!
7) So no possible vested interest in pushing this as a theory here
Ans. That's right....NONE!
8) This is just ill-researched and unfounded scaremongering.
Ans: Whoever said this should study the research with an open mind.
As an example:
STATISTICAL RESULTS OF NEW ZEALAND MATTRESS-WRAPPING CAMPAIGN
In 2002 a German environmental medicine practitioner, Dr Hannes
Kapuste, published the statistical results of the New Zealand
mattress-wrapping campaign: "Giftige Gase im Kinderbett" ("Toxic
Gases in Infants' Beds"), Zeitschrift fuer Umweltmedizin (2002,
The "p" factor for the mattress-wrapping intervention was
calculated by Dr Kapuste (in collaboration with the University of
Munich) as being: p = less than 1.9 x 10(exp minus 22)
It is usual in medical circles to regard a "p" of less than 0.01
as sound proof of a scientific proposition; and if the "p" is
less than 0.001, that is regarded as virtually certain proof.
1.9 x 10(exp minus 22) (the "p" factor for mattress-wrapping) can
be written as: 0.000,000,000,000,000,000,000,19
Put another way, the statistical proof that mattress-wrapping
prevents cot death is one billion billion times the level of
proof which medical researchers generally regard as constituting
certain proof of a scientific proposition. Not surprisingly,
therefore, Dr Kapuste described the toxic gas theory for cot
death and mattress-wrapping for cot death prevention as having
Research which confirms and supports the toxic gas theory for cot
PUBLICATION OF THE TOXIC GAS THEORY:
* The toxic gas theory for cot death was published by British
scientist Barry Richardson in 1994: "Sudden Infant Death
Syndrome: a possible primary cause", Journal of the Forensic
Science Society 1994;34(3):199-204
PUBLICATION OF PROOF OF THE GAS GENERATION INVOLVED:
The fungal generation of extremely toxic nerve gases from com-
pounds of phosphorus, arsenic and antimony has been demonstrated
many times over the last century. Recent confirmations are:
* "Toxic gas generation from plastic mattresses and sudden
infant death syndrome", Lancet 1995;346:1516-20
* "Confirmation of the Biomethylation of Antimony Compounds",
Applied Organometallic Chemistry 1997; Vol. 11, 471-483
PUBLICATION OF PROOF OF THE PRESENCE OF FUNGAL GROWTH IN BABIES'
* Barry Richardson, JFSS 1994;34(3):199-204
* Final Report of the Expert Group to Investigate Cot Death
Theories: Toxic Gas Hypothesis (Limerick Report), May 1998
PUBLICATION OF PROOF OF THE PRESENCE OF THE ELEMENTS PHOSPHORUS,
ARSENIC AND ANTIMONY IN BABIES' BEDDING:
* Analyses of bedding reported by Jim Sprott in The Cot Death
Cover-up? (Penguin, 1996)
PUBLICATION OF PROOF OF THE GENERATION OF HIGHLY TOXIC GASES
FROM COMPOUNDS OF PHOSPHORUS, ARSENIC AND ANTIMONY IN BABIES'
MATTRESSES AND OTHER BEDDING:
* Richardson, B A, "Sudden Infant Death Syndrome:
a possible primary cause", Journal of the Forensic
Science Society 1994;34(3):199-204
* Cullen, W R, "Microbial studies of sheepskin bedding",
Sixth SIDS International Conference, Auckland, February
* Fitzpatrick M G, "The Evolution of Phosphine from Cot
Mattress Materials", Department of Chemistry, University
of Auckland, Final Report, December 1997
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT THE RE-USE OF MATTRESSES INCREASES THE
RISK OF COT DEATH (A COROLLARY OF THE TOXIC GAS THEORY):
* "Case-control study of sudden infant death syndrome in
Scotland, 1992-5", British Medical Journal 1997;314:1516-20
PROOF THAT THE RISK OF COT DEATH RISES FROM FIRST TO SECOND
BABIES; AND FROM SECOND TO THIRD BABIES; AND FROM THIRD TO
FOURTH AND LATER BABIES; AND THAT BABIES OF SOLO PARENTS ARE AT
HIGHER RISK AGAIN (A COROLLARY OF THE FACT THAT RE-USE OF
MATTRESSES INCREASES THE RISK OF COT DEATH):
* Analysis of official British statistics
The finding of the rising risk of cot death from one
sibling to the next refutes every proposition that cot
death has a medical cause.
The more times an unwrapped mattress is used from one baby
to the next, the greater is the risk of cot death. This
accounts for the higher cot death rate among poorer
families, who are more likely to sleep their babies on
previously used mattresses.
If a mattress contains any of the elements phosphorus,
arsenic or antimony, and if certain common household
fungi have become established in the mattress during
prior use, any generation of toxic gas commences sooner
and in greater volume.
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT LATER BABIES IN A FAMILY ARE MORE AT
RISK OF COT DEATH THAN FIRST BABIES (A COROLLARY OF THE FACT
THAT RE-USE OF MATTRESSES INCREASES THE RISK OF COT DEATH):
* "Risk factors of sudden infant death in Chinese babies",
American Journal of Epidemiology 1997;144:1070-73
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT FACE-UP SLEEPING REDUCES THE RISK OF
* All studies which show that face-up sleeping reduces the
risk of cot death support the toxic gas theory. Face-up
sleeping reduces the risk because the gases concerned are
more dense than air; they diffuse away from a baby's
mattress towards the floor, so a baby sleeping face-up is
less likely to ingest them.
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT COT DEATH BABIES SHOW PHYSIOLOGICAL
EFFECTS OF GASEOUS POISONING:
* "Decreased Kainate Receptor Binding in the Arcuate Nucleus
of the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome", Journal of Neuro-
pathology and Experimental Neurology 1997;56:1253-61: proof
that cot death babies have neurochemical deficits consis-
tent with poisoning by nerve gases
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT THE COT DEATH RISK VARIES WITH MATTRESS
* New Zealand Cot Death Study (1987-1990)
PUBLICATION OF PROOF THAT THE COT DEATH RISK IN BRITAIN IS LESS
ON PVC-COVERED MATTRESSES:
* CESDI study, reported in Lancet 1995;345:720
Any part of a baby's mattress which contains the chemicals
phosphorus, arsenic and/or antimony is capable of the gas
generation which causes cot death.
If, therefore, a mattress is covered with a gas-impermeable
diaphragm which does not contain those chemicals, the risk
of cot death is eliminated.
Accordingly, following removal of those chemicals from UK
plastic-covered mattresses from 1989 onwards, the risk of
cot death in Britain is less on PVC-covered mattresses
(which are very frequently used in Britain).
Thus the finding by the CESDI study that babies are less at
risk on PVC-covered mattresses supports the toxic gas
theory for cot death.
PUBLICATION OF RESULTS OF THE NEW ZEALAND MATTRESS-WRAPPING
* Kapuste, H, Giftige Gase im Kinderbett (Poisonous Gases in
Children's Beds), Zeitschrift fuer Umweltmedizin
BOOK REGARDING THE TOXIC GAS THEORY FOR COT DEATH:
* Jim Sprott, The Cot Death Cover-up? (Penguin, 1996).
* * * * * * *
T James Sprott OBE MSc PhD FNZIC
Consulting Chemist & Forensic Scientist
10 Combes Road
Phone & Fax: 64-9-5231150
I am inclined to agree with the scepticism of Gwenick on this one - the reason is that I took an interest in this subject 2 years ago before the birth of my son - but found that Dr Sprott seems to be more interested in the commercial side of his ideas rather than trying to save lives - ie when I tried to find out how to mattress wrap, I found that I would have to pay to learn about the process via the strict protocol...surely a doctor is more interested in saving lives and should make this information available to everyone without trying to sell it? Fair enough if he wants to sell mattresses, but surely the process of mattress wrapping should be made freely available if he feels this will save lives???
I first heard about this "mattress wrapping" and toxic fumes from mattresses about 9/10 years ago.
If I remember correctly, I think Roger Cook (The Cook Report) ran an article about it. Don't think much came of it, and I'm sure SIDS campaign didn't think much of it.
Sorry, but I find these types of posts a bit odd too. Like the ones on mmr.
Been to the website and think this thread should have paid an advertising fee on MN. Will contact MN about it.
That's right Slinky, Roger Cook did a program on it the week my ds was born. There have been several studies since that have shown that the link is completely unproven, and I find the idea that anyone would suggest that smoking might have no effect pretty worrying. I know epidemiology gets a bad press on MN at times, but the cot death epidemiology studies have been pretty good by and large, and the smoking link is very significant.
nannyoakley - have you no opinion on anything else? I think you've more than made your point here. You have posted an opinion - people don't agree with you - tough! That's the way of the world dearie.
Just to add the other side of the story....
have a lookhere
OMG more cut and paste of a lot of old toffee. I have a sence of Deja Vu! Any else???
Pertinent quote from that site, Slinky:
"Mr Richardson's claim that the decrease was due to publicising his advice to wrap mattresses is unfounded: as of 1993-95, only 2% of babies were sleeping on wrapped mattresses; babies have also been found to die on wrapped mattresses"
Thank you Slinky, I would have gone and bought a mattress wrapper if it wasn't for you
I think it's the way these threads are presented that get me.
Me too hercules, it's all this completely uncritical copying and pasting. At least the others didn't apparently have a commercial basis
it gives me the creeps when threads appear like this. Can't nannyoakley be barred - she's clearly trying to flog her own commercial interests
Am glad there are lots more posts now was scared when I read this
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