Apparent Life-Threatening Event
Alternate Names : Apnea Spell, Infant Apnea, Acute Life-Threatening Episode, ALTE
What can be done to prevent the condition?
ALTE cannot necessarily be prevented. Preventing illness and
infections when possible may decrease the likelihood of an episode of ALTE.
However, most normal babies do not experience ALTE.
What are the long-term effects of the condition?
The long-term effects of ALTE vary depending on the cause. If there
was an episode of ALTE and no other symptoms, there will often be no long-term
effects. If the ALTE was caused by an infection that can be easily treated, there
may be no other long-term effects. If the ALTE has another underlying cause,
long-term effects may vary. They could range from treatable causes to life-threatening
problems or even death.
The caregiver may also have some long-term effects. Witnessing
an ALTE in an infant can be a very frightening experience. The caregiver often
worries that the child may stop breathing again. Learning CPR can often help
ease the caregiver's fears.
What are the risks to others?
ALTE is not contagious, although the underlying cause may be
contagious. For example, if the ALTE was triggered by an infection, the infection
may be contagious.