• Maternal drug abuse during pregnancy exposes the fetus to the possibility of toxic or addicting effects. At a methadone hydrochloride maintenance program providing medical care to drug-dependent women and their infants, ophthalmologic examinations of all infants born during a 36-month period were performed. Twenty-nine infants prenatally exposed to psychoactive drugs were seen at birth and on follow-up. The 24% prevalence of strabismus found in the drug-exposed infants was significantly greater than that of 2.8% to 5.3% reported in the general population. These data suggest that maternal drug abuse and increased methadone dosage during pregnancy may predispose infants to the development of strabismus.
Nelson LB, Ehrlich S, Calhoun JH, Matteucci T, Finnegan LP. Occurrence of Strabismus in Infants Born to Drug-Dependent Women. Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(2):175-178. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460020065028