Vaccines and SIDS

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Vaccines and SIDS
ClaimsVaccines are claimed to cause sudden infant death syndrome
Year proposed1991
Original proponentsAttributed to Robert Mendelsohn
Subsequent proponentsViera Scheibner, Kelly Brogan
Pseudoscientific concepts

A speculated link between vaccines and SIDS has been refuted,[1] but remains a common anti-vaccine trope.[2] The claim - attributed to Robert Mendelsohn in 1991[3][non-primary source needed] and promoted by anti-vaccination activists such as Viera Scheibner in the early 1990s - is that vaccines, especially the DTP vaccine that protects against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, cause sudden infant death syndrome. The World Health Organization has classified this as a "common misconception".[4]

Some also claim that a vaccine court case, Boatmon v. Secretary of Health and Human Services, 13-611 (Fed. Cl. 2017), proves this link. While compensation was awarded to Boatmon, this did not prove any link,[5] and the award was in any case vacated in July 2018 as the Special master had applied too low a standard of proof.[6]

Multiple studies and meta-analyses have shown that vaccinated children are less likely to die of SIDS.[7]


  1. ^ "Declining SIDS is More Evidence Vaccines are Safe". American Council on Science and Health. 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2019-02-01.
  2. ^ "Antivaccine propaganda from Dr. W. Gifford-Jones in The Toronto Sun". Science-Based Medicine. 2018-10-29. Retrieved 2019-02-05.
  3. ^ Overell, Bette (1993). "Animal Research Takes Lives: Humans and Animals Both Suffer". NZ Anti-Vivisection Society Inc. Retrieved 2019-02-01.
  4. ^ "Six common misconceptions about immunization". WHO. Retrieved 2019-02-01.
  5. ^ "No, a Vaccine Court ruling does not show that vaccines cause SIDS". Science-Based Medicine. 2017-08-21. Retrieved 2019-02-01.
  6. ^ Judge, THOMAS C. WHEELER. "BOATMON v. SECRETARY OF HHS". Leagle. Retrieved 2019-02-01.
  7. ^ "Vaccines and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)". Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2018-12-20. Retrieved 2019-02-01.