Navigation Links
Drinking in Pregnancy Shows Up in Child's Growth: Study

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Children who had significant prenatal exposure to alcohol may have delayed weight gain during infancy and alcohol-related growth restriction from early infancy until 9 years of age, researchers report.

Weight, height and head circumference are indications of brain growth, the study authors pointed out. Persistent reductions in these measurements among children exposed to alcohol in the womb suggest the effects may be permanent and could affect their mental development, according to the study published online Aug. 15 and in the November print issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

"These effects may be detrimental to the children as growth deficits have been shown to be related to other health problems, such as lower IQ," study corresponding author Dr. R. Colin Carter, an instructor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, said in a news release from Children's Hospital Boston. "Furthermore, the effects of alcohol on growth were much more severe if the child had iron deficiency anemia as an infant, a condition that is common in the U.S. and worldwide."

The study involved newly pregnant women in Cape Town, South Africa. The researchers divided the women into two groups based on their drinking habits. In the first group, there were 85 women who drank two or more drinks per day or four or more drinks at a time. The second group included 63 women who did not drink at all or drank less than one drink daily.

While pregnant, the women described their smoking habits and alcohol and drug use to researchers, and provided demographic information. Their babies were measured for length, weight and head circumference when they were 6.5 months and 12 months old. These measurements were also taken when the children were 5 years and 9 years old.

Children whose mothers drank heavily while they were pregnant had reduced weight, height and head circumference, compared to children who were not exposed to as much alcohol, the study revealed.

"This alcohol-related growth restriction was present in early infancy and persisted through to 9 years of age. What is important is that these effects were exacerbated by iron deficiency in infancy," Carter said. "By contrast, iron deficiency at 5 years of age and food security did not impact the effects of alcohol on growth."

Children with significant prenatal alcohol exposure had a delay in weight gain at 12 months old, the study found. In addition, the children with fetal alcohol syndrome and partial fetal alcohol syndrome had leaner body composition than other children who did not have these conditions.

The study authors said that growth restrictions should be used as a marker for prenatal exposure to alcohol.

"We saw a postnatal delay in weight gain at 12 months, which may have relevance for postnatal nutritional interventions," Carter said. "The leaner body composition seen in children with [fetal alcohol or partial fetal alcohol syndrome] could be attributable to decreased nutritional intake, for example, total energy or protein, increased metabolic needs, for example, from increased catabolism or physical activity, or a deficit in nutrient utilization in alcohol-exposed children."

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about alcohol and pregnancy.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: Children's Hospital Boston, news release, Aug. 15, 2012

Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Brain Scans May Spot Teens at Risk for Problem Drinking
2. Leveraging bacteria in drinking water to benefit consumers
3. Brain activity may predict teens heavy drinking
4. Drinking Iced Tea Raises Kidney Stone Risk: Study
5. Seniors with serious illness find smoking, drinking tough habits to break
6. Heavy Drinking in Pregnancy Linked to Host of Problems in Children
7. Binge drinking increases the risk of cognitive decline in older adults
8. Early-life exposure to chemical in drinking water may affect vision, study finds
9. Moderate Drinking May Cut Womens Odds for Rheumatoid Arthritis: Study
10. Allergy-like symptoms after drinking wine
11. Moderate Drinking During Pregnancy Has No Effect on Young Children: Study
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Drinking in Pregnancy Shows Up in Child's Growth: Study
(Date:11/24/2015)... , ... November 24, 2015 , ... DMG Productions announced ... Begley Jr., airing first quarter 2016 via Discovery Channel. Dates and show times TBA. ... Province, and is in the business of producing and supplying medical marijuana pursuant to ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Preparing for the LDT Regulation:, CLIA Won’t ... , FDA has long asserted that design and manufacture of Laboratory ... tests and do not meet the device regulations. , Come up short in an ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... The ... waive paid entry and parking fees at several of their most popular properties, ... Great Barrington in support of REI’s Black Friday #OptOutside Campaign. The Trustees encourage ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Port Richey, FL (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... it deems a growing epidemic as deaths from prescription opioids in the United States ... heroin and cocaine. In 2013 alone, opioids were involved in 37 percent of all ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... gather to share their knowledge and experiences at a live taping of the ... Ruesch Center for the Cure of Gastrointestinal Cancers 2015 Symposium at Georgetown University ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... November 24, 2015   ... dietician deliver s advice and insights on ... More than 50% of Dubai ... healthy according to the DHA   femMED launches comprehensive solutions ...    Dubai residents are not consuming enough to ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , Nov. 24, 2015 Abaxis, Inc. (NasdaqGS: ... instruments and consumables for the medical, research, and veterinary ... Chief Financial Officer, will present at the 27 th ... 1, 2015 at 11:30 a.m. ET. The conference will ... New York City . ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 2015 Edelris announce today that they ... Inserm, Poxel, CNRS, UCBL and ENS-Lyon on a new treatment ... --> Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is a major ... infected worldwide, 20 to 40% of them being at risk ... the existence of an effective preventive vaccine, the HBV infection ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: