Journal of Pediatric Neurology and Medicine

ISSN: 2472-100X

Open Access

Illicit drug use during pregnancy, risk factors and consequences in childhood


Marina Villarreal

Drug misuse in pregnancy is a complex and increasing public-health problem. Estimates of drug misuse in pregnant women vary across the world and the populations studied. In the USA, the 2004 Survey on Drug Use and Health showed that 5% of American women reported the use of an illicit drug during pregnancy. In the UK, national estimates for pregnant drug users are lacking, but studies report that approximately a third of drug users in treatment are female and over 90% of these women are of childbearing age (15–39 years of age). A study comparing the profiles of pregnant drug users presenting to a perinatal addictions service in London (UK) found illicit heroin use (38%), followed by cocaine use (24%) as primary drugs of abuse, with polysubstance use common .


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