Passive Smoking Might Increase the Risk of Birth Defects or Stillbirth: Study

A study conducted by the researchers from the University of Nottingham states that pregnant women who are passive smokers are at a higher risk of delivering infants with defects or stillborn babies. Passive smoking, inhaling the cigarette smoke of other people, increased the chances of congenital birth defects by 13% and still birth by 23%.

19 systematic studies were carried out in South America, North America, Europe and Asia on pregnant women who were non-smokers but exposed to passive smoking at home or workplace. According to Dr. Jo Leonardi-Bee, from the University of Nottingham, pregnant women who smoke carry serious health risks like fetal mortality, premature birth, birth defects etc. Since second-hand smoking also exposes the person to the same tobacco toxins as an active smoker, at lower levels, it is possible that some of complication mentioned above might be experienced by passive smokers.

The researchers suggest that the expectant fathers should be more responsible and aware of the dangers of passive smoking on their unborn child. A pregnanct woman should protect herself from second-hand smoking both pre-conception as well as during pregnancy to avoid any kind of complication. The study appears in the journal Pediatrics.

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