Page last updated: February 2015
Low-to-moderate prenatal alcohol consumption and the risk of selected birth outcome

A research project explored whether low-tomoderate prenatal alcohol exposure is associated with selected birth outcomes. Low-to-moderate prenatal alcohol drinking and effects on low birthweight, preterm delivery, intrauterine growth restriction, and selected neonatal outcomes were evaluated among 4,496 women and singleton infants. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated using multivariable logistic regression, controlling for confounding variables.

The results indicate that early pregnancy drinking was associated with reduced odds of low birthweight, OR, 0.66 (95% CI, 0.46-0.96) and birth length less than 10th percentile, OR, 0.74 (95% CI, 0.56-0.97). Drinking during the first 3 months showed lower odds for birth length and head circumference less than 10th percentile, OR, 0.56 (95% CI, 0.36-0.87) and OR, 0.69 (95% CI, 0.50-0.96), respectively. Third trimester drinking was associated with lower odds for low birthweight, OR, 0.56 (95% CI, 0.34-0.94) and preterm delivery, OR, 0.60 (95% CI, 0.42-0.87).

Therefore, the results suggest low-to-moderate alcohol exposure during early and late gestation is not associated with increased risk of low birthweight, preterm delivery, intrauterine growth restriction, and most selected perinatal outcomes. Source: Low-to-moderate prenatal alcohol consumption and the risk of selected birth outcomes: a prospective cohort study. Lundsberg LS; Illuzzi JL; Belanger K; Triche EW; Bracken MB. Annals of Epidemiology, Vol 25, No 1, 2015, pp46-54.

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