Autism rates have soared in the last few decades. It’s a word that scares so many new parents but what are the contributing factors to such a rapid rise in this neural development disorder?
Both environmental and genetic factors have been identified as possible causes. There is new research which suggests that medical procedures, used to induce or augment labour, may also be risk factors.
Induced labour and autism
The researchers at Duke University in North Carolina, USA, showed that there is a link between induced labour and autism. They studied over 625,000 cases, of which, 5600 children developed autism. Within these instances, the researchers found a connection between labour induction methods and the disorder. It was also observed that boys in this group were almost three times more prone to developing autism.
The study also linked labour augmentation, which is when doctors decide to speed up the labour process by using artificial hormones. These practices have been linked to other labour complications as well.
Further research and conclusions
This latest research confirms what other studies on induced labour were suspecting. Evidence that there is a link between induced labour and autism, particularly in baby boys who are more prone to the disorder.
Find out which hormones are to blame for this rise in autism on the next page…