New research led by the University of Zaragoza (Spain) evaluates differences in body composition between infants of smoking mothers and nonsmoking mothers during pregnancy and the proportional distribution of body mass.
The study, published in the journal Early Human Development, reveals that children of nonsmoking mothers weighed and measured again, and all body circumferences are significantly higher compared with those of children born to smoking mothers, but not the index weight (the ratio between height and the cube root of weight).
In fact, the results emphasize that mothers who smoke during pregnancy have infants of 180 to 230 grams thinner than mothers who do not smoke, representing an average of 216 grams.
In addition, skinfolds, which show the amount of fat, are lower in infants of smoking mothers, although in smaller proportion than in body size.
By contrast, the authors found no correlation between anthropometric measures and the number of cigarettes smoked per day by the mother during pregnancy.
“Given the scant literature found about it, it was necessary to assess the impact of snuff in body composition of infants born to women who smoked during pregnancy,” explains SINC Gerardo Rodriguez, author of the paper.
To do this, the researchers analyzed the-term infants with gestational age of at least 37 weeks, of 1,216 Caucasian mothers (22.1% of whom smoked an average of nearly eight cigarettes per day) in the Hospital Clinico Universitario Lozano Blesa in Zaragoza. There were excluded from the sample of children of mothers who reported having consumed alcohol or illegal drugs during pregnancy.
“Snuff consumption during pregnancy involves a widespread reduction in most parameters as a result of impaired fetal growth. Babies born to women who smoked during pregnancy are smaller and have less subcutaneous fat compartment,” concludes Rodriguez.
The first indications of the consequences of “passive smoking” health appeared in the early seventies, when it began to publish works in which found the risk of inhaling “second-hand smoke of snuff” in non-smokers with respiratory disease or heart and also in children whose parents were smokers.
In 1981 the British Medical Journal published a paper setting out Hirayama epidemiologist for the first time the increased risk of lung cancer to passive smoking. Hirayama had studied for 14 years a sample of women nonsmokers who lived with smokers. During the following years, there succeeded the publications to relate to other pathologies.
Second-hand smoke is a mixture of snuff stream exhaled by the smoker (mainstream) and cigarette smoke in their spontaneous combustion (secondary current). The main stream comes from a combustion higher oxygen content which is filtered as it travels along the cigarette itself.
Currently, there is unanimity that the “involuntary smoking” has adverse effects on health. The scientific community has no doubt that in adults causes increased risk of lung cancer, cardiovascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).