The opioid epidemic and neonatal abstinence syndrome in the USA: a review of the continuum of care

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Abstract

As the prescription opioid epidemic grew in the USA, its impact extended to pregnant women and their infants. This review summarises how increasing rates of neonatal abstinence syndrome resulted in a need to improve care to pregnant women and opioid-exposed infants. We discuss the variations in care delivery with particular emphasis on screening at-risk mothers, scoring systems for neonatal drug withdrawal, type and duration of pharmacotherapy, and discharge safety.

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