Effect of prenatal alcohol exposure on childhood academic outcomes: contrasting maternal and paternal associations in the ALSPAC Study

Alati, Rosa, Smith, George Davey, Lewis, Sarah J., Sayal, Kapil, Draper, Elizabeth S., Golding, Jean, Fraser, Robert and Gray, Ron (2013) Effect of prenatal alcohol exposure on childhood academic outcomes: contrasting maternal and paternal associations in the ALSPAC Study. PloS One, 8 10: 74844.1-74844.9. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0074844


Author Alati, Rosa
Smith, George Davey
Lewis, Sarah J.
Sayal, Kapil
Draper, Elizabeth S.
Golding, Jean
Fraser, Robert
Gray, Ron
Title Effect of prenatal alcohol exposure on childhood academic outcomes: contrasting maternal and paternal associations in the ALSPAC Study
Journal name PloS One   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication date 2013-10-09
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0074844
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 8
Issue 10
Start page 74844.1
End page 74844.9
Total pages 9
Place of publication San Francisco, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Language eng
Abstract The impact of low-to-moderate levels of alcohol consumption during pregnancy on child cognitive outcomes has been of recent concern. This study has tested the hypothesis that low-to-moderate maternal alcohol use in pregnancy is associated with lower school test scores at age 11 in the offspring via intrauterine mechanisms.
Formatted abstract
Background: The impact of low-to-moderate levels of alcohol consumption during pregnancy on child cognitive outcomes has been of recent concern. This study has tested the hypothesis that low-to-moderate maternal alcohol use in pregnancy is associated with lower school test scores at age 11 in the offspring via intrauterine mechanisms.

Methods: We used data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), a birth cohort study based in the South West of England. Analyses were conducted on 7062 participants who had complete data on: maternal and paternal patterns of alcohol use in the first trimester and at 18 weeks' gestation, child's academic outcomes measured at age 11, gender, maternal age, parity, marital status, ethnicity, household crowding, home ownership status and parental education. We contrasted the association of mother's alcohol consumption during pregnancy with child's National Curriculum Key Stage 2 (KS2) test scores with the association for father's alcohol consumption (during the time the mother was pregnant) with child's National Curriculum Key Stage 2 (KS2) test scores. We used multivariate linear regression to estimate mean differences and 95% confidence intervals [CI] in KS2 scores across the exposure categories and computed f statistics to compare maternal and paternal associations.

Findings and conclusions: Drinking up to 1 unit of alcohol a day during pregnancy was not associated with lower test scores. However, frequent prenatal consumption of 4 units (equivalent to 32 grams of alcohol) on each single drinking occasion was associated with reduced educational attainment [Mean change in offspring KS2 score was −0.68 (−1.03, −0.33) for maternal alcohol categories compared to 0.27 (0.07, 0.46) for paternal alcohol categories]. Frequent consumption of 4 units of alcohol during pregnancy may adversely affect childhood academic outcomes via intrauterine mechanisms.
Keyword Light Drinking
Spectrum Disorders
Cognitive Deficits
Binge-Drinking
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID 092731
G9815508
MC_UU_12013/1
083506
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
 
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