What causes 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

The current resurgence in heroin use is associated with the introduction of a cheap, smokeable form that is comparable to crack cocaine, only more potent. Cocaine's current popularity is related to increased availability and the presence of newer, cheaper forms.

Depression is common in reproductive age women, and continued pharmacologic treatment of depression during pregnancy may be necessary to prevent relapse. Neonates who are exposed to antidepressant medications during gestation are at increased risk to have neonatal abstinence syndrome.


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