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Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)

Are you interested in participating in future research studies on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD)?

Our research interests include:

  • Testing new treatments for children and adults with FASD
  • What supports and services are most helpful for families
  • How prenatal alcohol exposure affects learning and behavior
  • And more!!

By joining our secure research registry, we can contact you when we have new studies available. You can then decide if you or your family want to participate in that study.

Add yourself to the DBP Research Registry >>

  • Behavior Treatment Services - Provides assessment and short-term treatment for children and teens with developmental delay or disability and challenging behaviors.
  • Community Consultation Program - Provides technical assistance, training, and continuing education to schools, community and state agencies that provide services to children with learning and behavioral challenges.
  • OPWDD Community and Home Intervention and Response Program (CHIRP) - Provides services to individuals with a developmental or intellectual disability living in Monroe County with significant behavioral difficulties.
  • Pediatric Feeding Disorders Program - Provides assessment and treatment for children who have difficulty eating related to food selectivity, food refusal, and disruptive mealtime behavior.
  • FASD Echo Program - Echo Program for Nurse Practitioners, Physicians, and Physician Assistants Working in primary care, mental health, residential treatment, or other community settings.

Recommended Books

  • Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: Parenting a Child with an Invisible Disability by Julia Brown; Mary Mather-ISBN: 9781500851880 Publication Date: 2014-08-20
  • Fantastic Antone Grows Up by Judith Kleinfeld; Barbara Morse; Siobhan Wescott-ISBN: 9781889963112 Publication Date: 2000-01-01

Books for Kids

  • Forgetful Frankie: The World's Greatest Rock Skipper by Jill Bobula-ISBN: 097840954X Publication Date: 2009
  • The Best I Can Be by Liz Kulp; Jodee Kulp-ISBN: 9781453820933 Publication Date: 2013-05-01

What is fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD)?

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term used to describe the range of effects that can occur in a child whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy. FASD includes several diagnostic conditions:

  • Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS)

  • Partial fetal alcohol syndrome

  • Alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder (ARND)

  • Alcohol-related birth defect (ARBD)


How is FASD diagnosed?

A child is diagnosed with an FASD by looking carefully at certain physical characteristics, growth patterns, and learning strengths and weaknesses. Interviews or records are reviewed to determine whether the child may have been exposed to alcohol during pregnancy.


How many people have FASD?

Between 2 and 5 of every 100 people have an FASD. Between 2 and 7 of every 1000 people have full FAS.


Associated Developmental and Learning Issues

Most children with FASD have some degree of developmental delay or difficulty learning. Common difficulties include:

  • Difficulty with social skills and building relationships

  • Difficulties with self-regulation

  • Delayed motor skills or poor motor coordination

  • Difficulty with daily living skills

  • Sensory processing difficulties

  • Learning problems: Children with FASD can have cognitive abilities ranging from severe intellectual disability to above average intellectual ability. Many children with FASD have normal intelligence. Common learning challenges include:

    • Difficulty shifting attention from one thing to another and solving problems flexibly

    • Difficulty remembering verbally learned information


Associated Medical Conditions

  • In infancy, low birth weight, feeding difficulties, and slow growth

  • Problems with sleep and sleep-wake cycle

  • Poor safety awareness


Associated Behavioral Conditions

  • ADHD

  • Depression

  • Mood disorders or bipolar disorder

  • Anxiety

  • Personality or conduct disorders

  • Reactive attachment disorder

Online Medical Reviewers:

  • Cole, Lynn, MS, RN, PNP