Symptoms

A variety of problems are typically associated with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), including:

• Growth deficiencies Small body size and weight, slower than normal development, and failure to catch up

• Skeletal deformities Deformed ribs and sternum; curved spine; hip dislocations; bent, fused, webbed, or missing fingers or toes; limited movement of joints; small head

• Facial abnormalities Small eye openings; skin webbing between eyes and base of nose; drooping eyelids; nearsightedness; failure of eyes to move in same direction; short upturned nose; sunken nasal bridge; flat or absent groove between nose and upper lip; thin upper lip; opening in roof of mouth; small jaw; low-set or poorly formed ears

• Organ deformities Heart defects; heart murmurs; genital malformations; kidney and urinary defects

• Central nervous system problems Small brain; faulty arrangement of brain cells and connective tissue; mental retardation—usually mild to moderate but occasionally severe; learning disabilities; short attention span; irritability in infancy; hyperactivity in childhood; poor body, hand, and finger coordination

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