What is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is not a single disease but a range of disorders which include numerous physical and mental problems, as well as various developmental defects, that may occur as a result of alcohol consumption by the mother while pregnant. No amount of alcohol is considered safe during pregnancy since alcohol passes easily through the placenta to reach the fetus, where it may also affect the fetal brain. Consuming even a small amount of alcohol carries the potential danger of irreversible birth defects in the baby. However, the risk may be lower with occasional drinking than with regular heavy drinking.