It has long been understood that any amount of alcohol during pregnancy can be harmful to the growing fetus. Now, scientists have seen how drinking alcohol in pregnancy can lead to heart defects at the baby’s birth.
They found a way to image the very early development of the embryonic heart and found that “even one episode of heavy drinking” could lead to fetal alcohol syndrome, which is a collection of congenital (present at birth) defects, including problems with the heart.
“Alcohol-induced congenital heart defects are frequently among the most life-threatening and require surgical correction in newborns,” the team of Case Western Reserve University scientists says.
Remember, the best amount of alcohol to drink when pregnant is none at all.