Sudden Infant Death Following Hexavalent Vaccination: A Neuropathologic Study
L. Matturri, G. Del Corno and A.M. Lavezzi
Pages 941-946 (6)
We examined a large number of sudden infant death syndrome victims in order to point out a possible causal
relationship between a previous hexavalent vaccination and the sudden infant death. We selected 110 cases submitted to
in-depth histological examination of the autonomic nervous system and provided with detailed clinical and environmental
information. In 13 cases (11.8%) the death occurred in temporal association with administration of the hexavalent vaccine
(from 1 to 7 days). In none of these victims congenital developmental alterations of the main nervous structures regulating
the vital functions were observed. Only the hypoplasia of the arcuate nucleus was present in 5 cases. In one case in particular
an acquired hyperacute encephalitis of the tractus solitarii nucleus was diagnosed in the brainstem. This study does
not prove a causal relationship between the hexavalent vaccination and SIDS. However, we hypothesize that vaccine
components could have a direct role in sparking off a lethal outcome in vulnerable babies. In conclusion, we sustain the
need that deaths occurring in a short space of time after hexavalent vaccination are appropriately investigated and submitted
to a post-mortem examination particularly of the autonomic nervous system by an expert pathologist to objectively
evaluate the possible causative role of the vaccine in SIDS.
Autonomic nervous system, brainstem, hexavalent vaccine, neuropathology, risk factors, SIDS.
“Lino Rossi” Research Center, Department of Biomedical, Surgical and Dental Sciences, University of Milan, Italy, Via della Commenda, 19 - 20122 Milan, Italy.