The effects of in-utero tobacco-toxin exposure on the respiratory system in children

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose of reviewPromotion of cigarettes to children and women has resulted in unacceptably high rates of smoking during pregnancy in most developed countries and the potential to greatly increase smoking by mothers in developing countries. the risks of smoking during pregnancy to mothers and unborn children are well known and include growth retardation, respiratory diseases and sudden infant death syndrome. Determining the effects of exposure on the fetus depends upon accuarte assessment of maternal smoking, both active and involunatry, and this can be done using self-reports and a variety of biomarkers in the mother and/or newborn.Recent findingsThe evidence is clear that most of the excess respiratory morbidity in children born to smoking mothers is due to in-utero exposure and that deficits in lung function measured soon after birth persist in children and adults. Recent studies have also indicated that some children are gentically predisposed to adverse outcomes in response to in-utero exposure.SummaryAlthough many women attempt to quit during pregnancy and effective interventions are available, ultimately the respiratory health of future generations will depend upon effective public health and tobacco control measures designed to preven smoking uptake by youth and in particular girls and yong women.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)312-316
JournalCurrent Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Publication statusPublished - 2006


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