Although some victims of abusive head injury will have no retinal
hemorrhages and some will have a sparse number of hemorrhages confined
only to the posterior aspects of the retina (the posterior pole; Fig. 587-2), the latter should be considered
a nonspecific but possible indicator of abuse. Short falls, cardiopulmonary
resuscitation with chest compression, meningitis, thrombocytopenia,
glutaric aciduria type 1, and coagulopathy are rare causes of a
very nonspecific pattern of mild hemorrhages in the posterior pole.1 Seizures,
apnea, isolated hypoxia, and vaccinations do not cause retinal hemorrhages.
Less common findings in shaken babies include vitreous hemorrhage,
retinal detachment, and total disruption of the ocular contents.