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Health Consequences of Drug Misuse

Prenatal Effects

Photo of a pregnant woman.Photo by ©Shutterstock/Yana Godenko

Studies show that various drugs may result in miscarriage, premature birth, low birth weight, and a variety of behavioral and cognitive problems in the child. A baby can also be born dependent on the drug if the mother uses it regularly—a condition called neonatal abstinence syndrome.

Drugs that may have adverse prenatal effects:

  • cocaine
  • heroin
  • inhalants
  • marijuana
  • MDMA
  • methamphetamine
  • nicotine
  • prescription and over-the-counter drugs

For more information on the effects of using these drugs during pregnancy, see the Substance Use in Women Research Report.

This page was last updated March 2017

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NIDA. (2017, March 23). Health Consequences of Drug Misuse. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/health-consequences-drug-misuse

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