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Implications for practice and research
■ Women should be informed that a relatively low level of alcohol increases the risk of impaired fetal growth and preterm birth.
■ Health professionals should advise pregnant women that since it is difficult to estimate how much alcohol they are consuming, avoiding alcohol is best for the baby.
■ Pregnant women who drink heavily should be provided with counselling, antenatal services, and appropriate interventions in a non-judgemental and supportive environment.
■ Research examining the association between the dose and pattern of maternal drinking and fetal outcomes is needed.
Controversy surrounds the issue of alcohol and pregnancy. Whether …
Competing interests None.