Public Health and Safety

Marijuana Use During Pregnancy – Increased Risks to Newborns

Some people believe that using marijuana during a pregnancy represents little to no risk to the unborn child, which is not the case. Authors of a new meta-analysis report (G. Marchand noted that marijuana use, during a pregnancy, has increased health risks to the unborn child. Risks such as low birth weight, small gestational size, risk of preterm delivery and greater risk of admission to a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). 

The authors cited that up to 60 percent of women who smoke marijuana continue to do so during their pregnancy. Women who consumed marijuana during a pregnancy had a significantly greater risk of an adverse neonatal outcomes than did women who abstained from use. 

This is a systemic review of 16 studies, involving over 59,000 patients, concerning in utero marijuana exposures and birth outcomes. It demonstrates that the benefit of abstinence during pregnancy is that it may result in decreased health risks to newborns.

Read Time: 10 – 15 minutes

Photo: / H. Naidoo