expert reaction to study looking at preconception alcohol consumption in men and incidence of birth defects


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A study published in JAMA Pediatrics looks at preconception paternal alcohol consumption and fetal birth defect risk.

Prof Rod Mitchell, Professor of Developmental Endocrinology, MRC Centre for Reproductive Health, University of Edinburgh, and Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist, Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, Edinburgh, said:

“This prospective population-based study in a large population report an association between alcohol consumption in the father and birth defects in the children.  They report a higher rate of birth defects in children born to fathers who had consumed alcohol (defined as at least once per week) when planning a partner pregnancy within 6 months.  The concept of paternal factors impacting on the health of offspring has been demonstrated in a number of animal studies that report paternal environmental and lifestyle factors may result in effects in the offspring.



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