Monday Series (1) – FASD Facts for Health Professionals
Thanks to Nofasd Australia for putting these facts together!
- Fact #1. Alcohol is a teratogen that readily crosses the placenta and damages the central nervous system and other organs and may impair prenatal and postnatal growth (Fitzpatrick & Pestell, 2016)
- Fact #2. When a mother consumes alcohol during pregnancy, the blood alcohol of the fetus is the same or higher than the mothers (Bower & Elliott, 2016)
- Fact #3. In the absence of facial dysmorphology, FASD is commonly underdiagnosed and mis-diagnosed as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Conduct Disorder (Stevens, S., Nash, Koren, & Rove, 2013).
- Fact #4. Only 41% of allied health and medical professionals are confident in asking about alcohol use during pregnancy which contributes to the under-diagnosis of FASD (Payne, Elliott, Bower et al., 2005).
- Fact #5. FASD is recognised as the leading preventable cause of birth defects and developmental and learning disability worldwide (Mather, Wiles & O’Brien, 2015).
- Fact #6. 92% of individuals living with FASD will have a co-occurring mental illness, with depression and suicidal ideation being the most common (Thanh & Jonsson, 2016)
- Fact #7. 50% of Australian women will experience an unplanned pregnancy, leaving the chance of alcohol exposed pregnancies very high (Australian Medical Association, 2016)
NOFASD Australia is an independent not-for-profit charitable organization. They are the national peak organization representing the interests of individuals and families living with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD).