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ALTE and Subsequent Learning Disabilities

In 1981 I found my two-month-old daughter in her crib not breathing and already blue. I was able to shake her and bring her back. This happened more than once. An episode was finally observed at the hospital with nurses observing and getting a monitor read out. We were immediately sent to Children's Hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas. At the time a Dr. Debra Browning was doing research with SIDS. This was the diagnosis she gave us. My daughter was listed as the second infant to be diagnosed and placed on a monitor in the state. We kept data of what took place over the next nine months, and still have the data on hand. There were 5 to 8 times per night that we had to bring her back around. Today she is a senior in high school, but has struggled with a learning disability. I am very interested in learning if this is a result of the earlier problems.

12 July 1998

It is possible? Yes. But there are so many other possible causes of learning disabilities, including the fact that in some school systems it seems that almost all the kids are labelled as having learning disabilities that you can never say that any one event causes a specific later result.

Michael Witman, MD
Lawrence & Memorial Hospitals
New London, CT

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