What is the role of cigarette smoking in the pathogenesis of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS)?

Updated: Dec 20, 2017
  • Author: Ashraf H Hamdan, MD, MBBCh, MSc, MRCP, FAAP; Chief Editor: Santina A Zanelli, MD  more...
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Answer

Several studies have demonstrated that maternal cigarette smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of having a low birth weight infant. [19] Neonates born to mothers who smoke during pregnancy weigh an average of 150-250 g less at birth than neonates born to mothers who do not smoke during pregnancy. Research findings also suggest that infants of mothers who smoke during pregnancy may develop nicotine withdrawal in a pattern that is related to the magnitude of in utero exposure. Infants who have been exposed to tobacco have been found to be more excitable and hypertonic and demonstrate more stress and abstinence signs.


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