Study: Smoking during pregnancy may cause heart problems in babies

March 8th, 2011 - 9:40 pm ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

New York, Mar 8 (THAINDIAN NEWS) Babies born to women who smoked in the first trimester of their pregnancy may have as much as 70 percent increased risk of developing heart problems.

Researchers found that women who smoke in the early part of their pregnancies expose their children to several heart defects. The study was published in the 28th of February issue of the journal, Pediatrics.

The researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention collected and studied data from about 2,525 infants who had heart problems. They also collected data on 3,435 other infants who were healthy. The data were collected from Baltimore and Washington, D.C. between 1981 and 1989.

When the researchers compared the data, they realized that the risk of heart disease was much higher in infants whose mothers smoked in the first trimester.

The Director of CDC, Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, warned that, “Women who smoke and are thinking about becoming pregnant need to quit smoking and, if they’re already pregnant, they need to stop,” adding that, “Quitting is the single most important thing a woman can do to improve her health as well as the health of her baby.”

Records show that in 2004 about $1.4 billion was used to manage congenital heart defects in the United States.

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