Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy and physical outcomes up to 5 years of age: A longitudinal study
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Aim: To examine whether alcohol exposure in pregnancy affects weight and head circumference (HC) at birth and 5 years, and whether these effects are independent of cigarette exposure in pregnancy and social disadvantage. Study design: The Mater-University Study of Pregnancy (MUSP) involves a prospective cohort of 8556 mothers who were enrolled at first antenatal visit. The quantity and frequency of alcohol consumption in early and late pregnancy and a measure of binge drinking in early pregnancy were recorded. Weight and HC were measured on children seen at birth and at 5 years. Level of cigarette use in early pregnancy and maternal age and level of education and family income were also measured. Results: Light and moderate alcohol consumption in early or later pregnancy had no independent effects on weight or HC at birth or 5 years. Binge drinking in early pregnancy was not associated with restricted HC, and there was no effect modification by concurrent cigarette use in early pregnancy. An apparent effect of alcohol in late pregnancy on birth weight was due to confounding by cigarette use, with social risk being an independent predictor. Conclusion: Alcohol ingestion up to moderate levels in pregnancy was not associated with deficits in either weight or HC at birth or at 5 years.
Early Human Development
© 2003 Elsevier. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.