Mother's Work Tied to Birth Defects

Women whose job requires them to stand for long periods of time may be at risk of delivering a child with an oral cleft defect (OCD) with additional malformations, a study reports. The risk appears to be tied to long periods of standing at the earliest stage of pregnancy, around the time of conception. Increases in physical activity which bring about higher energy needs may also harm fetal growth in women who do not have access to enough food and nutrients, the study adds.

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 1998;40:829-834.

COMMENT: An interesting observation regarding what appears to be a superficially benign activity.

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