This book documents the consequences of the exposure of infants to the influence of intrauterine chemicals. In setting out the evidence for these outcomes, the authors demonstrate that decisions about care and management can and should be made as early as possible. This should allow professionals to provide protective management and prevent the delays that are so often seen in this area of medical and social care. The international team of contributors sets out to inform the reader of the potential risks to infants exposed to a range of intrauterine chemicals that are potentially neuroactive, including medicinal drugs such as antiepileptics, antidepressants and antipsychotics, as well as drugs of abuse, including alcohol, opiates, and recreational drugs such as cannabis and tobacco. They review the teratogenic action of some of the chemical processes and the relationship of exposure to the stage of pregnancy. Some agents alter anatomic structure; others alter the chemical balance of neurotransmitters and may thus alter the regulation of brain function, with profound effects on the child's behaviour and propensity to behavioural disturbances. The book explores strategies to support these children and those who care for them, including statutory agencies.
About the Author
Ed Riley served as Chair of the National Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome/Fetal Alcohol Effect. He currently serves as the Steering Committee Co-Chair of the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Center for Excellence. He has been President of the Research Society on Alcohol, the Fetal Alcohol Study Group, and the Behavioral Teratology Society. He has served as Associate Editor of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol, and is on the Editorial Boards of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research and the Psychological Record. He has received numerous awards for his scholarship and service, most recently the Research Society on Alcoholism Distinguished Researcher Award.