Effects of mode of delivery and maternal irritable bowel syndrome on childhood autism spectrum disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in a British cohort
METHODS: Data were from the Millennium Cohort Study, a population-based survey in the United Kingdom (UK), which is representative of all children born in the UK in the year 2000. Data on mode of delivery, demographics and parental history were collected in 2001, when the child was approximately 9 months old, and data on ASD and ADHD were collected in 2008 when the child was approximately 7 years old. Cases were children whose parents reported that a health professional had diagnosed their child with ASD and/or ADHD. Logistic regression was used to assess associations, and control for potential confounders including maternal depression and antidepressant use.
RESULTS: Of the 13,857 that participated in the 2008 survey, 13,604 responded with regards to ASD (209 reported cases) or ADHD (173 reported cases). Maternal IBS was associated with an increased risk of ASD (OR: 1.66 95% CI:1.05-2.60), and ADHD (OR: 1.54 95% CI:0.83-2.88), although the OR for ADHD was not statistically significant. ECS showed no significant association with ASD or ADHD.
CONCLUSIONS: No association was found with mode of delivery. However, to our knowledge, this is the first study to demonstrate a link between IBS and childhood mental illness. Considering the high prevalence of IBS, this may have significant public health implications and should be studied further.
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