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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Narcotic dependency in pregnancy. Methadone maintenance compared to use of street drugs.

The course of pregnancy and delivery in 28 women under closely supervised methadone maintenance (group 1) was compared with that of 57 women using heroin or methadone under less controlled circumstances (group 2) and with that of 30 women free of mood-altering medications (group 3). Women in group 1 had the lowest incidence of coexisting medical problems (p=.025), with an incidence of fetal distress not statistically different from that of women in group 3. Infants born to women group 2 had the highest fetal distress (p less than.05), with four congenital defects, one stillbirth, and one neonatal death. Symptoms characteristic of narcotic withdrawal occurred with similar frequency in group 1 and 2 infants, appearing earlier in children whose mothers were users of heroin. These findings indicate that maintenance of the pregnant addict under closely supervised methadone therapy is compatible with an uneventful pregnancy and birth of a healthy infant whose withdrawal symptoms in the neonatal period are readily controllable.[1]


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