Friday 20 January 2017

No alcohol is best for mums-to-be

Published 27/10/2015 | 02:30

Don't drink during pregnancy
Don't drink during pregnancy

"The only ethical advice that can be given is complete abstinence from alcohol in pregnancy."

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That is the latest warning from two eminent medics, echoing advice from the Department of Health here.

Mary Mather, a retired paediatrician, and Kate Wiles, a doctoral research fellow in obstetric medicine at Guys and St Thomas NHS Trust said infants can suffer from fetal alcohol syndrome, mental retardation, development and behavioural abnormalities, and low birth weight.

But how and when fetal damage occurs is unknown and will vary according to each individual pregnancy, they say.

Pregnant women must know there is no evidence of a threshold level of alcohol consumption in pregnancy below which there can be certainty that exposure is safe, they argue.

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