oa SA Pharmaceutical Journal - Smoking and reproductive health : clinical

Volume 74, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2221-5875
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1017



Nicotine and carbon monoxide are the substances in cigarette smoke that are responsible for most of the adverse effects in pregnancy.

Smoking in pregnancy is associated with an increase in miscarriage, low birth weight babies, abruption placentae, placenta praevia and perinatal mortality.
Women who smoke have an earlier onset of menopause when compared with non-smoking women.
Smoking impairs fertility in both men and women via its effect on gametes and ovarian function.
Smoking is an important co-factor in the development of cervical cancer.
A wide range of cognitive and behavioural problems such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been identified in children of mothers who smoke during pregnancy.
There is an association between smoking in pregnancy and an increase in childhood cancers, such as leukaemia and lymphoma.

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