Archives     Advertise     Editorial Calendar     Subscribe     Contact Us    


Low-level Alcohol Use Increases Miscarriage Risk


 

Women who consume alcohol during pregnancy -- even in small amounts -- have a 19% greater risk of miscarriage than women who don't use alcohol, according to a new study by Vanderbilt researchers.

Published in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, the study also found that for alcohol exposure of less than five drinks per week, each additional drink per week during pregnancy was associated with a 6% increase in miscarriage risk.

"Since alcohol is one of the most common exposures in early pregnancy, it's critical to understand how consumption relates to miscarriage," said Alex Sundermann, an MD/PhD student at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and the study's lead investigator. "Adverse pregnancy outcomes, like fetal alcohol syndrome, are often associated in popular culture with heavy consumption. However, our meta-analysis indicates even a modest amount of alcohol use has a meaningful impact on miscarriage risk."

It is thought that alcohol use increases miscarriage risk by increasing oxidative stress for the fetus, causing cellular damage. Sundermann became interested in the link between alcohol exposure and miscarriage after a prior study from her lab, led by Katherine Hartmann, MD, PhD, found that more than half of women use alcohol in the early stages of pregnancy prior to having a positive pregnancy test, regardless of whether the pregnancy was planned.

Sundermann's most recent work involved a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies published between 1970 and 2019 about alcohol exposure and miscarriage. Twenty-four studies met the criteria for inclusion in the review, representing data from more than 231,000 pregnant women.

The meta-analysis, which is the first pooled measure of alcohol use and miscarriage, demonstrates exposure in pregnancy is associated with a dose-dependent increase in miscarriage risk.

The systematic review also revealed important gaps in the existing literature, including a lack of knowledge about how the timing of alcohol exposure is linked to risk.

The prior study out of Hartmann's lab found that most women quit using alcohol altogether following a positive pregnancy test, but no studies account for the effect of this change in behavior.

"Timing of alcohol exposure in pregnancy is undoubtedly meaningful but isn't well studied. The groundwork for fetal development is laid in those first weeks of gestation before pregnancy can be detected with a home test, and that is also the time when alcohol exposure is most prevalent. It's key that we understand the impact of consumption in those first weeks," Sundermann said.

Sundermann hopes further investigation will help shed light on risk factors for miscarriage, which is experienced by one in three women. Despite being common, many women never receive answers about why their miscarriage occurred.

"Most women are motivated to do anything they can for the health of their pregnancy. We want to provide this information to empower women to make the best decisions," said Sundermann.

This research was supported by an independent fellowship grant from the National Institute of Child and Health Development.

 
Share:

Related Articles:


Recent Articles

Alexander Visits Neighborhood Health at East Side in Nashville

VIDEO of United States Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) visiting the Neighborhood Health at East Side health center in Nashville, where he learned more about what the center is doing to provide access to health care services in urban, underserved areas of Nashville.

Read More

AMA Grants MycoDART CPT Code For Its Life-Saving Test

MycoDART, Inc., developer of proprietary DNA tests, announced its second patented assay has been granted a CPT code from the American Medical Association.

Read More

Low-level Alcohol Use Increases Miscarriage Risk

Women who consume alcohol during pregnancy -- even in small amounts -- have a 19% greater risk of miscarriage than women who don't use alcohol, according to a new study by Vanderbilt researchers.

Read More

Beating the Odds

Vanderbilt Children's Hospital researchers play key role in groundbreaking study.

Read More

Hot Topics in Healthcare Law

Never a dull moment ... the highly regulated nature of the healthcare industry keeps America's health lawyers hopping.

Read More

Vanderbilt Children's New Program Leaders, Rankings

Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt has recently welcomed new leaders to oversee specialty programming and again been recognized nationally in multiple specialties.

Read More

Insuring Kids

Local experts offer insight over ongoing coverage concerns for Tennessee children

Read More

Services for Mom & Baby Expanding at TriStar Centennial

Innovative initiatives at TriStar Centennial designed to keep mom and baby safe, together.

Read More

Another Option to Address Pediatric ADHD

NeuroSigma recently received FDA clearance for the first device to treat pediatric ADHD, offering providers, patients and parents a new alternative to medication.

Read More

Back to School Reminders for Patients & Providers

Back-to-school season is here, and it's a great time to talk to patients and parents about starting off the year with healthy habits

Read More

Email Print
 
 

 

 


Tags:
None
Powered by Bondware
News Publishing Software

The browser you are using is outdated!

You may not be getting all you can out of your browsing experience
and may be open to security risks!

Consider upgrading to the latest version of your browser or choose on below: