Babies exposed to methadone in utero show developmental side effects
Observational study: A study in which the subject is observed to see if there is a relationship between two or more things (eg: the consumption of diet drinks and obesity). Observational studies cannot prove that one thing causes another, only that they are linked.
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Children exposed to methadone in the womb show significantly poorer attention and were more excitable at two years of age compared to infants who are not exposed, according to Kiwi research. Replacing opioids with methadone during pregnancy has been shown to reduce usage, but little is known about how the substitute therapy affects child development. The researchers analysed health data from 86 infants born to opioid-dependent women in Christchurch, and say their findings highlight a unique population of children at risk.
Journal/conference: PLOS One
Link to research (DOI): 10.1371/journal.pone.0240905
Organisation/s: University of Auckland, University of Canterbury
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