There have been multiple pieces of research in the past suggesting augmentation or induction during the time of labor may be one of the many reasons for newborns being born autistic.
However, a statement released by the American College of Obstetricians refutes these claims and say there is no sufficient evidence to back claims such as these.
A report from the Duke University had suggested young mothers who reportedly had uterine contractions can be at a risk to have their offspring for being diagnosed on the spectrum.
On the other hand, various other studies citing different sources with similar findings blamed continual exposure to Oxytocin to be a reason behind autism.
Oxytocin is a hormone that is administered during augmented or induced labors.
Some error has occured.
However, a committee opinion by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has clearly stated in one of their statements as ‘inconsistent theories that in no way demonstrate causation.’
To back up with strong evidence, the ACOG committee reviewed multiple studies to analyze the link that purportedly exists between autism and Oxytocin in children.
The committee discovered a glaring number of limitations on the earlier researches carried out.
For instance, multiple studies reviewed had highlighted them being smaller in size and have been completed using the earlier data. The committee highlights the studies not giving prior importance to other external and influential factors during the course of their research.
The committee further highlights the lack of evidence in backing up the claim for labor augmentation or induction being responsible to cause autism.
The committee says it is concerned about studies such as these as it may end up in influencing patient care.
“Such things reduce the actual face value of the studies by suggesting the need for continual research,” explain the committee members.
The committee puts forth the details of their findings and points towards a summary of studies they had to go through in order to understand the claims of autism and induction. Of all the studies reviewed, the committee saw three studies finding a weak link, while other six studies had no association with the claims.
One study was seen to have found a persistent association.
Nevertheless, the committee highlights the study was not able to determine whether autism could be attributed to causes and effects arising out during augmentations.
The committee, on the basis of their findings, explains
“The present evidence doesn’t identify casual relationships between augmentation and autism in general.”
Labor augmentation or induction plays a critical role in having the health of young mothers protected, and we need to ensure babies are delivered with utmost safety, explains Dr. Jeffery L. Ecker.
Dr. Ecker further says, “The studies that lack sufficient evidence should in no way influence the ways obstetricians to care for their patients.”
In conclusion, there is a need to recognize the available limitations of the study before arriving at a decision, explains the committee