London: Passive smoking increases the risk of still birth by 23 percent and was linked to a 13 percent increased risk of congenital birth defects, a new study says.
It reiterated that pregnant women exposed to second-hand smoke are at a higher risk of delivering stillborn babies or babies with defects, says a new study.
The findings underline the importance of discouraging expectant fathers from smoking around their pregnant partners, the journal Paediatrics reports.
"Mothers` smoking during pregnancy is well-recognised as carrying a range of serious health risks for the unborn baby, including foetal mortality, low birth weight, premature birth." a statement quoted Jo Leonardi-Bee at the Tobacco Control Studies, Nottingham University, as saying.
The findings were drawn from a systematic review of 19 studies carried out in North America, South America, Asia and Europe and centred on pregnant women who did not smoke themselves but were exposed to second-hand smoke in the home by their partners or in the workplace by colleagues.