There is a significant association between opioid exposure of the mother and increased risk of congenital birth defects such as Spina Bifida.
Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord don’t form properly. It falls under the broader category of neural tube defects. The baby is born with a split in its back along the spine in which the spinal chord protrudes.
Spina Bifida is one of the most prevalent physical defects caused from in-vitro exposure to opioids.