New studies support evidence of brain damage from drinking during pregnancy

December 3, 2012 at 4:23 pm

European researchers may have uncovered the most profound evidence to date of the impact of alcohol on fetal brains.

The doctors and scientists used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), diffusion weighted imaging (DWI), and proton (hydrogen) magnetic resonance spectroscopy (HMRS) to compare the brain development of the children of 200 women who drank alcohol during pregnancy with the children of 30 women who did not consume alcohol during pregnancy or nursing.

The nerve bundle that mediates communication between the left and right hemispheres of the brain (corpus callosum) was the most affected brain area from maternal alcohol consumption. Thinning of the corpus callosum to total absence of the nerve bundle was noted depending on how much and how frequently the mother consumed alcohol while pregnant.

The relationship between the corpus callosum and fetal alcohol syndrome has been determined previously but this work is the most elaborate and graphic demonstration of the affect to date.Fetal alcohol syndrome produces lifelong mental difficulties in children.

You can read the full article here and the press release from the Radiological Society of North America here.

Entry filed under: Prevention.

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