Maternal Smoke Exposure and Children's Neurodevelopment

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The article intends to evaluate the kind of association that exists between maternal smoke exposure of expectant mothers and their children’s neurodevelopment. It is focused on pregnant mothers using urine cotinine and their eighteen months old children. The study was done on mother-child cohort found in Crete (Evlampidou et al., 246).

Methods of Study

The methods of the study included the selection of Greek mothers having singleton pregnancies. The participants picked are those that had never smoked but with some measurements of urine cotinine in pregnancy. A neurodevelopment assessment was then conducted and completed for the mother’s children. Two face-to-face interviews were conducted on the pregnant women; one during their pregnancy and the other postnatally. The third edition of the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development was utilized in the neurodevelopment assessment of the 18 months old children. Finally, the generalized additive and linear regression models we used as part of the study designs (Evlampidou et al., 247).


One hundred and seventy-five (175) of the participants met the inclusion criteria out of the 599  women picked; this is approximately 29% of the participants. There were low levels of maternal urine cotinine strongly associated with reported passive smoking accounted resulting from different sources. Results show a negative association between a child’s gross motor function and the different cotinine levels observed in pregnant women. The results are similar for children of both sexes. Although statistically insignificant and small, there was a negative relationship observed for receptive and cognitive communication levels (Evlampidou et al., 248).


There exists a relationship between second-hand smoking in pregnant women and the neurodevelopment of children. A decline in the gross motor functions of children can be positively associated with maternal exposure to second-hand smoke during pregnancy. The effects can be observed even at low exposure levels (Evlampidou et al., 250).        

Works Cited

Evlampidou, Iro, et al. "Prenatal second-hand smoke exposure measured with urine cotinine may reduce gross motor development at 18 months of age." The Journal of Pediatrics 167.2 (2015): 246-252.

August 09, 2023



Child Development

Subject area:

Developmental Psychology

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