In this chapter we focus on the impact of used drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, opiates and amphetamines, on later developmental outcomes. The earliest studies of the effects of recreational substance used in pregnancy occurred for alcohol, and these studies began to appear in the 1970s. In the 1980s gestational smoke exposure research accelerated and now is one of the most extensive body of research in the prenatal exposures literature. During the first part of the 1990s gestational cocaine research accelerated, and a small body of research exists on a variety of other recreational or street drugs. Finally, there are many studies that report on the topic of “prenatal drug use,” often meaning poly-drug use. For the purpose of clarity, we have broken out each of the illicit substances, although the more common scenario is for users to ingest not just a single substance, but multiple substances.
KeywordsBirth Weight Illicit Drug Prenatal Exposure Cocaine Exposure Placental Barrier
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