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Epidemiol Psichiatr Soc. 2006 Jan-Mar;15(1):20-9.

Prenatal cocaine exposure: an examination of childhood externalizing and internalizing behavior problems at age 7 years.

Author information

1
Perinatal Chemical Addiction Research and Education (CARE) Program, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, Florida 33101, USA. vaccornero@med.miami.edu

Abstract

AIM:

This study examines the relationship between prenatal cocaine exposure and parent-reported child behavior problems at age 7 years.

METHODS:

Data are from 407 African-American children (210 cocaine-exposed, 197 non-cocaine-exposed) enrolled prospectively at birth in a longitudinal study on the neurodevelopmental consequences of in utero exposure to cocaine. Prenatal cocaine exposure was assessed at delivery through maternal self-report and bioassays (maternal and infant urine and infant meconium). The Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), a measure of childhood externalizing and internalizing behavior problems, was completed by the child's current primary caregiver during an assessment visit scheduled when the child was seven years old.

RESULTS:

Structural equation and GLM/GEE models disclosed no association linking prenatal cocaine exposure status or level of cocaine exposure to child behavior (CBCL Externalizing and Internalizing scores or the eight CBCL subscale scores).

CONCLUSIONS:

This evidence, based on standardized ratings by the current primary caregiver, fails to support hypothesized cocaine-associated behavioral problems in school-aged children with in utero cocaine exposure. A next step in this line of research is to secure standardized ratings from other informants (e.g., teachers, youth self-report).

PMID:
16584100
PMCID:
PMC2641031
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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