#093 The Story Behind The Study

fasd success show Jan 29, 2022
The first prevalence study on FASD in the U.K. was released late last year. Today we go behind the scenes with two of the team Professor Penny Cook and Robyn McCarthy.
The Study Team. Pictured: Dr. Alan Price, Professor Penny Cook, Robyn McCarthy, and David Gilbert. Not picture Dr. Raja Mukherjee. 
When I was pregnant the formal advice was it’s probably safer not to drink but there’s no evidence there’s the harm if you just drink one or two small drinks a week.

We are diving deep to learn about how the study came about as well as:  

  • The different messages women have received in the past about drinking and pregnancy and that some are still receiving today. 
  • The process of finding funding, how participants are selected and some barriers the researchers faced. 
  • Reactions of potential funders, parents, and the reactions to the Study results. 

While this was a preliminary study based on children in greater Manchester, it has opened the dialogue and desire for a national study. We talk about that as well as some of the interesting results the researchers didn’t expect and a few initiatives underway to follow up, including a new parenting program.  

Now we’ve established it is common, what do we do to support people? We have no setup to diagnose and there is a lack of expertise. But there are a lot of passionate people trying to make things better. 

Professor Cook also gives us details on a new research project looking at the factors that predispose individuals with FASD to encounters in the criminal justice system and how individuals in the U.K. can get involved. I found this a fascinating look behind the curtain of research. In fact, many did, as the journal it was published in indicated it was the most widely shared article from the second half of last year. 


Show Notes: 

Research website: Our Projects - FASD 

Justice Study: Criminal Justice - FASD (salford.ac.uk) 


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