• women;
  • prenatal;
  • alcohol;
  • screening;
  • fetal alcohol spectrum disorder;
  • Congo



To determine prevalence of prenatal alcohol use in Brazzaville, Congo and to evaluate a prenatal screening tool for use in this population.


A prospective population screening program of 3099 women at 10 prenatal care clinics in Brazzaville, Congo using the 1-Question screen. To validate the 1-Question screen in this population we screened 764 of these women again using the T-ACE as a gold standard for comparison study. The study outcomes were as follows: prevalence of self-reported prenatal alcohol use in Brazzaville using the 1-Question screen, estimation of number of drinking days, drinks per drinking day, most drinks on any one occasion. We also estimated the epidemiologic performance criteria for the 1-Question screen.


The 3099 women screened were classified as follows: no risk 77% (n = 2,384); at risk 3.7% (n = 115); and as high risk 19.3% (n = 600). Of the women reporting drinking during pregnancy, 87.4% reported drinking 4 or more drinks on any occasion. The agreement for detection of alcohol use during pregnancy by the 1-Question Screen and a positive T-ACE score was 94.7%.


23.3% of women attending prenatal care in Brazzaville reported alcohol use during pregnancy and 83% of them continued to drink after recognition of pregnancy. Prenatal alcohol exposure should be the focus of efforts to improve identification of alcohol use prior to and during pregnancy to improve maternal and child health. Birth Defects Research (Part A) 97:489–496, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.