Fetal Alcohol Syndrome an overview

The characteristic alcohol fetal syndrome symptoms features are most noticeable between eight months and eight years of age. If you suspect that your child has FAS, an intervention as early as the age of six could make a major difference in your child’s quality of life. FAS can easily be avoided by not drinking any alcoholic beverages during pregnancy. In addition, when trying to get pregnant or having unprotected sex, it is recommended to avoid alcohol. Pregnancies can go unnoticed for up to six weeks, so avoiding alcohol during times of possible pregnancy is important. Damage can occur in the earliest weeks of pregnancy; therefore, women need to avoid alcohol completely.


Although traditionally believed through the https://ecosoberhouse.com/ who is pregnant woman has more than four standard drinks per day. There is evidence supporting the father before conception can cause FAS through long term epigenetic mutation of the father’s sperm as well during conception. In 1977, Dr. Clarren described a second infant whose mother was a binge drinker.

Signs and Symptoms

It was initially used in research studies to describe humans and animals in whom teratogenic effects were seen after confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure , but without obvious physical anomalies. Smith described FAE as an “extremely important concept” to highlight the debilitating effects of brain damage, regardless of the growth or facial features. This term has fallen out of favor with clinicians because it was often regarded by the public as a less severe disability than FAS, when in fact its effects can be just as detrimental.

  • Prenatal or postnatal presentation of growth deficits can occur, but are most often postnatal.
  • The symptoms of FASDs may resemble other medical conditions or problems.
  • One or more diagnostic schema can be used to identify an FASD, dependent upon the presentations.
  • Summit Malibu is Joint Commission Accredited and licensed by the California Department of Health Care Services.
  • Most people with an FASD have most often been misdiagnosed with ADHD due to the large overlap between their behavioral deficits.

The condition causes growth problems, brain damage, and other irreversible defects in the baby. FAS symptoms can vary from one child to another, and therefore each case should be treated specifically. Children with fetal alcohol syndrome and their families may benefit from the support of professionals and other families who have experience with this syndrome.

Primary Prevention

Research has shown that early identification and enrollment in treatment can significantly improve an affected child’s development and life. Children with an FASD can have brain abnormalities that lead to problems in day-to-day functioning despite having a normal IQ, so a comprehensive evaluation is indicated. All children with involvement in foster care or adoption processes―especially international adoptions―should always be evaluated for a possible FASD. But this means the mother must stop using alcohol before getting pregnant.

What are the three major criteria for diagnosing FASD?

There are three main criteria for a diagnosis of FAS: pre-natal and/or post-natal growth delays, facial anomalies – thin upper lip, small-set eyes, short palpebral fissures, and a smooth space between the upper lip and nose – and evidence of significant central nervous system deficits in at least three brain domains ( …

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