Midwives have welcomed the latest research on birth defects linked to smoking in pregnancy.

Commenting on the study from UCL in Human Reproduction Update, Janet Fyle (Professional Policy Advisor at the Royal College of Midwives) said: "These findings support what we already know: smoking before conception and during pregnancy has a negative health impact on a woman's health and that of the developing fetus.

"The RCM believes that women thinking of becoming pregnant, pregnant women and women with young children should be told about the negative effects of smoking and the impact on their long-term health and that of others living in the home.

"Midwives should advise women who smoke to give up smoking and refer them to stop smoking services to help them quit. Partners should also consider this as a good time to consider giving up smoking.

Posted by Penny Hosie on 13.7.11 Send your comments on this article to: penny.hosie@pavpub.com