U of M study: Association found between risk of autism and induced labor

Aug 12, 2013

A new University of Michigan study finds an association between inducing or augmenting labor during childbirth and an increased risk of autism.

The study compared birth records of more than 600 thousand North Carolina children and their corresponding public school records. Researchers found a 35% increased risk of autism in boys whose mothers' labors were induced or augmented.

Marie Lynn Miranda is a Pediatrics professor at U of M. She says the study does NOT draw a direct link to autism.    Miranda says the autism may be related to conditions that lead to induction or augmentation or to other factors.

“If I were giving advice to my very best friend, about whether this study should make her question her doctor’s advice about induction or augmentation, I would say absolutely not,” says Miranda.

Miranda recommends pregnant women discuss their concerns with their doctors.

The study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association…Pediatrics.