More Rhode Island babies are being born dependent on the opioid drugs their pregnant mothers were taking. Their condition, called neonatal abstinence syndrome, sometimes requires hospital stays and powerful medications. In the second of our two-part series, the story of a newborn going through withdrawal and a young mother trying to make a new life for him in recovery. (You can listen to part one of our series here.)
Visiting baby Jonathan “Where’s everybody headed?”
More Rhode Island babies are being born dependent on the opioid drugs (including OxyContin and heroin) their pregnant mothers were taking. Many of these babies need hospital stays and powerful medication to help them through the painful withdrawal. Now, researchers at Women & Infants Hospital are trying to pin down what treatments work best, and what the long-term impacts are. Part one of our two-part series on newborns in withdrawal.
The state’s health department says the number of babies born in Rhode Island to mothers dependent on opiates has nearly doubled in the past few years.
In 2012, it was 90 babies, more than double the number in 2005. So far, in the first quarter of this year, it’s 26 newborns.
This is the first time health department researchers have compiled statistics on babies diagnosed with neonatal abstinence syndrome, a collection of symptoms that afflict babies in withdrawal from the drugs they were exposed to in the womb.