Document Detail

Alcohol consumption during pregnancy.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16350764     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Alcohol is a potent teratogen in humans, and prenatal alcohol exposure is a leading preventable cause of birth defects and developmental disabilities. The term fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) refers to a pattern of birth defects found in children of mothers who drank during pregnancy. FAS has four criteria: maternal drinking during pregnancy, a characteristic pattern of facial abnormalities, growth retardation, and brain damage (often manifested by intellectual difficulties or behavioral problems). As surveillance and research have progressed, it has become clear that FAS is but a rare example of a wide array of defects that can occur from exposure to alcohol in utero. At least 1 in 10 women will continue to consume alcohol during pregnancy, putting their fetuses at risk for the effects of alcohol exposure. Nurses are in a key position to provide care and conduct research that will contribute to the prevention of the adverse effects of prenatal alcohol exposure during the preconception and perinatal periods, as well as deal with the negative outcomes of exposure in the developing infant. Many areas have yet to be evaluated. Screening tools and interventions have been developed and tested, mostly in majority cultures. Culturally sensitive instruments must be generated and validated for high-risk groups such as Native Americans. Fetal alcohol biomarkers and genetic research are new and need considerably more work. Effective "no drinking during pregnancy" campaigns for high-risk groups must be created and tested. Nurses are well placed to conduct research that will describe the effects at social, behavioral, and biological levels; develop middle-range theories targeted at preventing the drinking behavior and optimizing care of affected children after birth; and generate and test effective interventions that enhance prevention strategies in the 21st century.
Cara J Krulewitch
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Annual review of nursing research     Volume:  23     ISSN:  0739-6686     ISO Abbreviation:  Annu Rev Nurs Res     Publication Date:  2005  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-12-14     Completed Date:  2006-01-12     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8406387     Medline TA:  Annu Rev Nurs Res     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  101-34     Citation Subset:  IM; N    
Department of Family and Community Health, School of Nursing, University of Maryland, Baltimore, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Alcohol Drinking / adverse effects*
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome / etiology*
Infant Mortality
Infant, Newborn
Pregnancy Outcome
Prenatal Care
Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects*
Risk Factors

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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