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What a Study Really Found About the Link between C-sections and Autism



A new study linking autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with caesarean section births provokes media stir, but a deeper look at the data reveals that headlines may be unnecessarily anxious for readers.

A new report published in the JAMA Network Open analyzed the results of 61 studies of more than 20 million C-sections in 19 countries and found an overall increase of 33 percent in the likelihood of a child developing autism – and a 17 percent higher risk of ADHD in comparison with those born vaginally.

The authors note that their statistical survey does not prove that C-sections cause ADHD or autism; rather, it may be that the factors that lead to the decision to have a C-section are related to these neurodevelopmental problems.

However, the results "suggest a reasonable use" of C-sections, the researchers said. [1

9659002] The team led by scientists at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm has examined data on millions of deliveries since 1999. Although this large body of data is significant when the prevalence of these disorders is reported – only 1% for autism and 7% for ADHD – the coefficient increase is still extremely low.

"Not very dramatic. It's statistically significant, but from a population point of view, the risk is not huge, "said Dr. Pankhury Vandana, a pediatric psychiatrist at Columbus National Ohio Hospital who did not participate in the study," Reuters said. " proves that the caesarean section causes autism or ADHD. The risk factors that lead to C-section can also be risk factors that lead to autism or ADHD. "


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