Early discoveries from a collaboration between the Seattle Children's Research Institute and Microsoft scientists provide pregnant women with new information on how smoking before and during pregnancy contributes to the risk of sudden death and unexpectedly of the infant before his first birthday.
According to the study published in pediatrics, any amount of tobacco during pregnancy – even a single cigarette a day – doubles the risk of an infant's death following sudden and unexpected death (SUID). For women who smoked an average of 1 to 20 cigarettes per day, the odds of suffering from sudden death on average increased by 0.07 for each additional cigarette smoked.
"With this information, doctors can better advise pregnant women about their smoking habits, knowing that the number of cigarettes smoked daily during pregnancy has a significant impact on the risk of SUID," said Dr. Tatiana Anderson, researcher at Seattle Integrative Brain Research Center Children & # 39; s. and lead author of the study. "Similar to public health campaigns that have educated parents about the importance of the baby's sleeping position, resulting in a 50% decrease in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) rates, we hope that advising women of this risk will reduce the number of deaths from these tragic causes. "
If no woman smoked during pregnancy, Anderson and her coauthors estimated that 800 of the approximately 3,700 SUID deaths each year in the United States could be prevented, which would lower current rates by 22%.
Data Deep Dive provides a detailed view of the impact of smoking on SUID risk
To better understand how smoking contributed to SUID's risk, researchers used computer modeling techniques to analyze maternal smoking habits of all live births in the United States from 2007 to 2011.
Of the approximately 20 million live births included in their analysis, more than 19,000 deaths were attributed to SUID, the specific cause of death being due to SIDS, an unclear and unknown cause, or accidental suffocation and strangulation in bed. .
Beyond overall cigarette consumption, researchers also examined how smoking before pregnancy and reducing or quitting during pregnancy had an impact on the risk of SUID.
Compared with more than half of pregnant smokers who did not reduce their smoking during pregnancy, women who reduced their cigarette smoking in the third quarter saw their SEID risk decrease by 12%. Quitting smoking successfully was associated with a 23% reduction in risk.
Their analysis also showed that mothers who smoked three months before pregnancy and quit in the first trimester still had a higher risk of SUID compared to non-smokers.
Need to quit before pregnancy
Anderson says the data in this study supports public health efforts to encourage women to quit well before pregnancy.
"The most important thing to remember is that women understand that quitting before and during pregnancy is by far the biggest risk reduction of SUID," she said. "For pregnant women unable to stop smoking completely, every cigarette they can eliminate will reduce the chances of sudden and unexpected death of their child."
Juan Lavista, one of the co-authors of the study, senior director of data science at the research laboratory "AI For Good" at Microsoft, explains how the research team applied Microsoft technology Artificial Intelligence (AI) to better understand SUID and potentially save lives.
"Using AI, we built machine learning models that analyzed millions of data on births and deaths of children, including mothers' smoking history, which we allowed to do something that had never been done before: evaluate the impact of each additional cigarette on the SUID at this level of granularity, "he said. "As part of our Artificial Intelligence Initiative for Humanitarian Action, Microsoft scientists will continue to investigate other causes of SUID alongside Seattle Children's Experts and the latter in the world. "