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Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

  1. Timothy E. Moore,
  2. Karina Royer Gagnier

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0354

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Moore, T. E. and Gagnier, K. R. 2010. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.

Author Information

  1. York University, Toronto, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is recognized by the World Health Organization as the leading cause of environment-related birth defects and mental retardation in the western world. It results from prenatal alcohol exposure, the consequences of which fall along a continuum ranging from subtle neurodevelopmental and behavioral manifestations to FAS, the most serious outcome. Recently, the term fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) was coined to encompass all the terms that describe alcohol-related defects, including FAS (Sokol, Delaney, & Nordstrom, 2003). Other terms, such as fetal alcohol effects (FAE), partial FAS (pFAS), alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder (ARND), and alcohol-related birth defects (ARBD) describe other effects within the spectrum.


  • fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS);
  • prenatal alcohol exposure;
  • teratogen;
  • alcohol dehydrogenase