gms | German Medical Science

MAINZ//2011: 56. GMDS-Jahrestagung und 6. DGEpi-Jahrestagung

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Medizinische Informatik, Biometrie und Epidemiologie e. V.
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Epidemiologie e. V.

26. - 29.09.2011 in Mainz

Bed sharing and the risk of SIDS: Can we resolve the debate?

Meeting Abstract

  • Mechtild Vennemann - Universität Münster, Münster
  • Hans-Werner Hense - Universität Münster, Münster
  • Ursula Kiechl-Kohlendorfer - Universität Innsbruck, Innsbruck

Mainz//2011. 56. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Medizinische Informatik, Biometrie und Epidemiologie (gmds), 6. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Epidemiologie (DGEpi). Mainz, 26.-29.09.2011. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2011. Doc11gmds184

doi: 10.3205/11gmds184, urn:nbn:de:0183-11gmds1845

Veröffentlicht: 20. September 2011

© 2011 Vennemann et al.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open Access-Artikel und steht unter den Creative Commons Lizenzbedingungen ( Er darf vervielfältigt, verbreitet und öffentlich zugänglich gemacht werden, vorausgesetzt dass Autor und Quelle genannt werden.



Background: There is an ongoing debate about whether parents should be advised on how and when to share their bed with their infants. The topic of bed sharing among non-smoking parents especially remains controversial.

Aims: To conduct a meta-analysis on the relationship between bed sharing and SIDS risk.

Methods: Data from PubMed and Medline were searched for studies published after January 1, 1970. The search strategy included published articles with the Medical Subject Headings terms "sudden infant death syndrome", "sudden unexpected death", and "cot death" combined with "bed sharing" or "co-sleeping". Data regarding bed sharing and risk of SIDS were analyzed using Comprehensive Meta Analysis (Vers. 2). To further specify the potential risk of bed sharing and SIDS, subgroup analyses were performed.

Results: Eleven studies met our inclusion criteria, and were enrolled in the final meta-analysis. The combined odds ratio (OR) for SIDS in all bed sharing versus non bed sharing infants was 2.89 (95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.99 - 4.18). The risk was most obvious in infants of smoking mothers (OR = 6.27, 95% CI 3.94-9.99), and infants younger than twelve weeks (OR = 10.37, 95% CI 4.44-24.21).

Conclusions: Bed sharing is a risk factor for SIDS and is especially enhanced amongst smoking parents and in very young infants. Emerging evidence suggests there is a significant interaction between bed-sharing and parental use of alcohol and drugs and an excess of SIDS bed sharing deaths on sofas.