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Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

Alcohol is a teratogen that readily crosses the placenta, resulting in damage to the brain and other organs of the developing fetus. Svetlana Popova and colleagues recently estimated that globally 9.8% of women in the general population consumed alcohol while pregnant in 2012 and that the prevalence of binge drinking (four or more drinks on a single occasion) during pregnancy ranged from 1.8% (in the World Health Organization [WHO] Western-Pacific Region) to 3.1% in the WHO African Region (AFR). Alcohol consumption during pregnancy can cause a wide range of adverse health effects to the developing fetus, including fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), which is composed of up to four diagnostic entities: fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), partial FAS, alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder (ARND), and depending on the ...

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