A brief intervention for prenatal alcohol use: an in-depth look

J Subst Abuse Treat. 2000 Jun;18(4):365-9. doi: 10.1016/s0740-5472(99)00105-1.


About 20% of pregnant women will drink alcohol, even though no universally safe level of prenatal alcohol consumption has been established. This study of 123 alcohol screen-positive pregnant women receiving a brief intervention in the 16th week of gestation examines the relationship of drinking goals, reasons for the goals, recognition of situations increasing risk of drinking, and subsequent antepartum consumption. While women who named abstinence as their antepartum drinking goal were more likely not to be consuming alcohol at the time of study enrollment (chi(2) = 16.80, df = 1, p =.001), current drinkers who named abstinence as their goal did reduce subsequent prenatal alcohol use (chi(2) = 10.04, df = 1, p =.002). All current drinkers who indicated fetal alcohol syndrome as a reason not to drink reduced their subsequent alcohol consumption (chi(2) = 11.04, df = 1, p =.001). Future efforts may include the partners and support systems of pregnant women in education or intervention programs to reduce prenatal alcohol consumption to enhance their effectiveness.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / adverse effects
  • Alcohol Drinking / prevention & control
  • Boston
  • Female
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders / prevention & control*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Personality Inventory
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Care*
  • Risk Assessment