Clinical Practice: ACOG Video Series Increases Awareness of FASD
While it is generally understood that heavy drinking during pregnancy can cause birth defects, the potential effects of limited to moderate alcohol consumption on fetal development are not well understood by both health care providers and the general public.
Unfortunately, this has led to mixed guidance for women who are pregnant or have the potential to become pregnant.
In his September President’s Blog post, ACOG President Thomas Gellhaus, MD, notes that a casual attitude toward drinking during pregnancy can result in permanent and debilitating conditions for the child, known as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). FASDs are a full spectrum of birth defects caused by prenatal alcohol exposure and can result in physical, behavioral, and cognitive defects.
ACOG recognizes the need to increase visibility and awareness of this important health issue. In an effort to relay the harmful impact and consequences of alcohol consumption on fetal health, ACOG has developed a collection of FASD educational videos aimed at health care providers. By watching these videos and showing them at meeting events, trainings, and conferences, we can more confidently discuss alcohol use during pregnancy with our patients.
There are currently three videos that you can view:
You can view the videos now on the ACOG website or ACOG’s YouTube channel.
Alcohol use during pregnancy is the leading preventable cause of FASDs, including birth defects, developmental disabilities, and learning disabilities — and it’s 100 percent preventable.
Pregnant patients need expert advice and consider their health care providers to be a trusted resource. It is critical that health care providers reinforce that there is no safe amount, no safe time, and no safe type of alcohol use during pregnancy.
For more information about alcohol use during pregnancy and FASDs, please visit ACOG’s Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Program webpage.
Also, make sure to watch the videos and click the “share” button (top right corner of viewer) to embed on your patient website or share on social media.