Shaken baby syndrome is a serious form of child maltreatment, often involving infants younger than six months of age. It commonly occurs, yet it is frequently overlooked in its most chronic form and underdiagnosed in its most serious expression. Section II of this article will discuss the symptoms, presentation, and clinical findings of shaken baby syndrome. It will conclude by looking at recommendations from the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect. Section III delves into the history, function and statistics of Child Death Review Teams on a national level. The discussion ends by examining Ohio's proposed legislation concerning these review teams. Section IV will take a look at Ohio's standard for presentation of scientific evidence via expert testimony. The debate centers around the proposition that Ohio's judiciary should reconsider its views regarding expert testimony. The argument encourages the judiciary to consider in its decision as to admissibility what the medical community has acknowledged in terms of expertise in this particular area. While this article is not aimed at finding fault with any particular court, nor is it an attempt at refuting sound medical evidence supporting a recognized diagnosis of shaken baby syndrome, the courts are urged to explore the possibility that physicians involved in a cooperative, multi-disciplined approach are more able to provide the trier of fact with an accurate diagnosis of shaken baby syndrome.
Note, Shaken Baby Syndrome: Who Are the True Experts, 46 Clev. St. L. Rev. 91 (1998)