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Characteristic Facial Features From Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)

Characteristic Facial Features From Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)

Children who were exposed to alcohol during fetal development often have distinctive facial features that may include:

  • A small head and flat face.
  • Narrow eye openings (slits).
  • A short, upturned nose.
  • A flattened groove between the nose and the upper lip (philtrum).
  • A thin upper lip.

Unless the effects of alcohol exposure are severe, these traits often aren't noticed until the child is about 2 or 3 years of age. Gradually, many of these features become less noticeable starting in the teen years. But a larger-than-average nose may become noticeable by adulthood.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical Reviewer Ernest L. Abel, PhD - Reproductive Toxicology
Last Revised March 3, 2011

Last Revised: March 3, 2011

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

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