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A longitudinal study of offspring born to methadone maintained women 1. design methodology and description of womens resources for functioning



A longitudinal study of offspring born to methadone maintained women 1. design methodology and description of womens resources for functioning



American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse 10(2): 135-160



To examine alternatives to the hypothesis that any lasting damage to a child is caused by the direct toxic effects of fetal exposure to methadone, designed a longitudinal, multigenerational study of the offspring of methadone-maintained women was designed. Extensive data was collected on both parents and children, hypothesizing that drugs can affect infants through a variety of causal routes. A method of data anaysis, POSAC, that retains the identity of individual children and families, was used to look at patterns of individuals' behavior over time and identify meaningful subgroups of individuals. Extensive information was collected from 18 methadone-maintained and 24 comparison women. During the last trimester of pregnancy, the women were interviewed about their education, families, lifestyles, drug use and health histories; their psychiatric functioning and IQ's were assessed. As a group, the methadone-maintained women were more likely to receive public assistance, to evidence psychiatric dysfunctioning and to be less educated (although showing no statistical difference in IQ's) than were comparison women. Similar to comparison women, 2/3 of methadone-maintained women were involved in stable relationships with male partners. The methadone-maintained women appeared committed to their methadone treatment and, in general, viewed their pregnancies in positive terms. Although as a group the methadone-maintained women possessed poorer resources for maternal functioning than the comparison group, about half the methadone-maintained women possessed resources at least adequate for maternal functioning.

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Accession: 004581328

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PMID: 6475885


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