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Smoking during pregnancy causes reduced birthweight

A new study has shown that smoking during pregnancy is associated with reduced birthweight// and stopping smoking can reverse this. Smoking during pregnancy is associated with several problems in the newborn.

The present study had evaluated the relation between maternal and spouses' expired air carbon monoxide (CO) concentrations (EACO) on the growth of the fetus. Expired air carbon monoxide (CO) concentrations (EACO) is a measure of smoking and exposure to smoking. Around 856 pregnant women which included smokers and non smokers were carefully watched for during their pregnancy. The expired air carbon monoxide concentration was determined both during the first trimester and during delivery for both the pregnant women and their spouses. The infants' birthweight, head circumference, Apgar score, and heart rate at delivery and cord blood fetal carboxyhemoglobin (FCOHb) were measured.

The results of the study showed that birthweight of the newborn was decreased corresponding to the level of both maternal or spouses' expired air carbon monoxide concentrations. This relation was found to be dose dependant. Head circumference, Apgar score, and normal term gestational age also decreased significantly with increasing maternal or spouses' expired air carbon monoxide concentrations.

The study has clearly shown the harmful effect of smoking and exposure to smoking on the newborn.

Prev Med. 2005 Jan;40(1):10-5.

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