Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content


Highlighted Articles

Key Findings: Newborn Screening for Critical Congenital Heart Defects Now Common Throughout the United States
In a new report in the journal, Pediatrics, CDC researchers and partners reviewed the overall effects of critical CHD screening, including costs and health outcomes (cost-effectiveness) of performing screenings, challenges at the state level for screening, and implementing screening in special settings.
(Published: April 15, 2016)

Key Findings: Gastroschisis – a Serious Birth Defect - Continues to Increase
New CDC research shows that the occurrence of gastroschisis, a birth defect where a baby’s intestines stick outside of the body through a hole beside the belly button, continues to increase over time. Importantly, the causes for the continued increase in the number of babies born with gastroschisis are unknown, and public health research is urgently needed to uncover more clues.
(Published: January 21, 2016)

Key Findings: Cost savings of spina bifida prevention after folic acid fortification in the United States
Recently, the American Journal of Preventive Medicine published a new study looking at the costs associated with a United States requirement that folic acid (a B vitamin) be added to all cereal grain products labeled as enriched (also called folic acid fortification)
(Published: January 11, 2016)

Key Findings: New Down Syndrome Growth Charts
New growth charts for children with Down syndrome in the United States are available
(Published: October 26, 2015)

Key Findings:
Factors associated with Dandy-Walker Malformation (DWM), a rare birth defect of the brain
(Published: May 19, 2015)

Key Findings:
Racial and Ethnic Differences in the Occurrence of Major Birth Defects
(Published February 18, 2015)

Public Perception of Birth Defects Terminology
Although the description “birth defects” is a common phrase, some people with birth defects and their family members have voiced concerns that this phrase promotes a negative view among the general public.
(Published October 22, 2014)

Updated National Birth Prevalence Estimates for Selected Birth Defects in the United States, 2004-2006
This CDC study used data from 14 birth defects tracking programs to look at the birth prevalence of birth defects in the United States from 2004-2006. Birth prevalence is the number of babies born with birth defects (including stillbirths and elective terminations) compared to the total number of live births in the population.
(Published October 22, 2014)

Maternal Asthma Medication Use and the Risk of Selected Birth Defects
Recently, researchers used data from the National Birth Defects Prevention Study (NBDPS) to examine maternal asthma medication use during pregnancy and the risk of certain birth defects.
(Published October 22, 2014)

World Down Syndrome Day: Raising Awareness
In honor of World Down Syndrome Day, read Stacy's hopeful story about her son Caleb who has Down Syndrome.
{Published March 18, 2016)

World Birth Defects Day
The goals for World Birth Defects Day are to raise awareness about birth defects, reduce stigma, and increase opportunities for prevention.
(Published: March 1, 2016)

Healthy Pregnancy: Living My PACT
Read stories from three pregnant women who share their perspectives of how they are striving for heathy babies by #LivingMyPACT.
(Published: January 25, 2016)

Birth Defects: 1 in 33
Read these family stories to learn more about birth defects and how these conditions can impact lives.
(Published: January 19, 2016)

Folic Acid and Birth Defects
Every woman needs to get enough folic acid each day, even if she does not plan to become pregnant.
(Published: January 11, 2016)

Living with Down Syndrome
Learn more about Down syndrome and about Keaton, a boy with Down syndrome.
(Published: October 5, 2015)

Talk to your doctor about medication use
Make a PACT to get healthy, physically and mentally, before and during pregnancy to increase your chances of having a healthy baby.
(Published: January 26, 2015)

Choose a Healthy Lifestyle
Get healthy before and during pregnancy
(Published: January 20, 2015)

Birth Defects
How to Avoid Harmful Substances
(Published: January 12, 2015)

Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention
July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month—an observance by individuals and organizations to help make people more aware of and give them information about cleft and craniofacial defects and other conditions that can affect the head and face.
(Published: November 21, 2014)

Articles of Interest

*Articles are listed in order of date published.


Maternal Asthma Medication Use and the Risk of Selected Birth Defects
DOI: 10.1542/peds.2010-2660
Pediatrics; originally published online January 16, 2012;
Bell and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study
Kimberly Campbell, Marilyn L. Browne, Paul A. Romitti, Richard S. Olney, Erin M.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Diabetes and congenital heart defects: a systematic review, meta-analysis, and modeling project.
Am J Prev Med. 2015;48(2):195-204.
Simeone RM, Devine OJ, Marcinkevage JA, Gilboa SM, Razzaghi H, Bardenheier BH, Sharma AJ, Honein MA.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Racial/ethnic differences in survival of children with birth defects in the United States:  a multi-state population-based study
J Pediatr. 2015 Jan 29. [Epub ahead of print]
Wang Y, Liu G, Canfield MA, Mai CT, Gilboa SM, Meyer RE, Anderka M, Copeland GE, Kucik JE, Nembhard WN, Kirby RS  for the National Birth Defects Prevention Network.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Fetal alcohol syndrome among children aged 7-9 years - Arizona, Colorado, and New York, 2010.
CDC. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Jan 30;64(3):54-7.
[Read article]

Supplement Use and Other Characteristics Among Pregnant Women with a Previous Pregnancy Affected by a Neural Tube Defect — United States, 1997–2009
CDC. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Jan 16;64(1):6-9.
[Read article] [Read key findings]

Updated Estimates of Neural Tube Defects Prevented by Mandatory Folic Acid Fortification — United States, 1995–2011.
CDC. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Jan 16;64(1):1-5.
[Read article] [Read key findings]

Long-term outcomes in children with congenital heart disease: National Health Interview Survey
J Pediatrics. 2015;166(1):119-124.e1
Razzaghi H, Oster M, Reefhuis J.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Gastroschisis Increased from 1995-2005
Martin JA, Hamilton BE, Sutton PD, Ventura SJ, Menacker F, Kirmeyer S, Munson ML. Births: Final data for 2005. National vital statistics reports; vol 56 no 6. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2007.
[Read key findings]

Differences in Hospital Costs and Length of Stay Among Children with Down Syndrome
Dawson AL, Cassell CH, Oster ME, Olney RS, Tanner JP, Kirby RS, Correia J, Grosse SD. Hospitalizations and Associated Costs in a Population-Based Study of Children with Down Syndrome Born in Florida. Birth Defects Research Part A. 2014 [epub ahead of print].
[Read key findings]

Antihistamines and Birth Defects: A Systematic Review of the Literature.
Expert Opin. Drug Saf 2014;13(12): 1667-1698.
Gilboa SM, Ailes EC, Rai RP, Anderson JA, Honein MA.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Pediatric inpatient hospital resource use for congenital heart defects.
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2014;100(12):934-43.
Simeone RM, Oster ME, Cassell CH, Armour BS, Gray DT, Honein MA.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Hospitalizations and associated costs in a population-based study of children with down syndrome born in Florida.
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2014;100(11):826-36.
Dawson AL1, Cassell CH, Oster ME, Olney RS, Tanner JP, Kirby RS, Correia J, Grosse SD.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Prevention of orofacial clefts caused by smoking: Implications of the Surgeon General's report.
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2014;100(11):822-5.
Honein MA, Devine O, Grosse SD, Reefhuis J.
[Read summary]

The association between race/ethnicity and major birth defects in the United States, 1999-2007.
Am J Public Health. 2014; 104(9):e14-23.
Canfield MA, Mai CT, Wang Y, O'Halloran A, Marengo LK, Olney RS, Borger CL, Rutkowski R, Fornoff J, Irwin N, Copeland G, Flood TJ, Meyer RE, Rickard R, Alverson CJ, Sweatlock J, Kirby RS; National Birth Defects Prevention Network.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Maternal exposure to methotrexate and birth defects: A population-based study.
Am J Med Genet A. 2014;164(9):2212-6.
Dawson AL, Riehle-Colarusso T, Reefhuis J, Arena JF; the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Role of health insurance on the survival of infants with congenital heart defects
American Journal of Public Health. 2014; 104(9):e62-70.
Kucik JE, Cassell CH, Alverson CJ, Donohue P, Tanner JP, Minkovitz CS, Correia J, Burke T, Kirby RS.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Maternal stressors and social support as risks for delivering babies with structural birth defects.
Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol. 2014;28(4):338-44
Carmichael SL, Ma C, Tinker S, Rasmussen SA, Shaw GM; National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Late detection of critical congenital heart disease among US infants: estimation of the potential impact of proposed universal screening using pulse oximetry.
JAMA Pediatr. 168(4):361-70.
Peterson C, Ailes E, Riehle-Colarusso T, Oster ME, Olney RS, Cassell CH, Fixler DE, Carmichael SL, Shaw GM, Gilboa SM.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Exposure to criteria air pollutants during early pregnancy and congenital heart defects in offspring
Environ Health Perspect.2014;122(8):863-72.
Stingone JA, Luben TJ, Daniels J, Fuentes M, Richardson DB, Herring AH, Aylsworth AS,  Botto L, Anderka M, Correa A, Gilboa SM, Langlois PH, Lupo PJ, Mosely B, Shaw GM,  Siffel C, Olshan AF and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read Summary]

Notes from the Field: Investigation of a Cluster of Neural Tube Defects — Central Washington, 2010–2013
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep, 62(35);730.
[Read Summary]

Patterns in the prevalence of congenital heart defects, metropolitan Atlanta, 1978 to 2005
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2013;97(2):87-94.
Bjornard K, Riehle-Colarusso T, Gilboa SM, Correa A.
[Read Summary] [Read key findings]

Trends in survival among children with Down syndrome in 10 regions of the United States.
Pediatrics. 2013;131(1):e27-e36.
Kucik JE, Shin M, Siffel C, Marengo L, Correa A; for the Congenital Anomaly Multistate Prevalence and Survival Collaborative.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Improved survival among children with spina bifida in the United States.
J Pediatr. 2012;161(6):1132-7.
Shin M, Kucik JE, Siffel C, Lu C, Shaw GM, Canfield MA, Correa A.
[Read summary]

Use of topiramate in pregnancy and risk of oral clefts.
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2012;207(5):405.e1-7.
Margulis AV, Mitchell AA, Gilboa SM, Werler MM, Mittleman MA, Glynn RJ, Hernandez-Diaz S; National Birth Defects Prevention Study
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Racial/ethnic differences in infant mortality attributable to birth defects by gestational age.
Pediatrics. 2012;130:1–10.
Broussard CS, Gilboa SM, Lee KA, Oster M, Petrini JR, Honein MA.
[Read summary]

Maternal occupational exposure to organic solvents and congenital heart defects: results from the national birth defects prevention study, 1997-2002.
Occup Environ Med. 2012;69(9):628-35.
Gilboa SM, Correa A, Desrosiers T, Lupo P, Lawson C, Riehle-Colarusso T, Stewart P, van Wijngaarden E, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Lack of periconceptional vitamins or supplements that contain folic acid and diabetes mellitus-associated birth defect
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2012;206(3):e1-13.
Correa A, Gilboa SM, Botto LD, Moore CA, Hobbs CA, Cleves MA, Riehle-Colarusso TJ, Waller DK, Reece EA; National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary] [Read key findings]

Racial/Ethnic variations in the prevalence of selected major birth defects, metropolitan atlanta, 1994–2005
Public Health Rep. 2012;127(1):52-61.
Kucik JE, Alverson CJ, Gilboa SM, Correa A.
[Read summary]

Health care expenditures among children with and those without spina bifida enrolled in medicaid in north carolina
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2011;91(12):1019-27
Cassell CH, Grosse SD, Thorpe PG, Howell EE, Meyer RE.
[Read summary]

Influencing clinical practice regarding the use of antiepileptic medications during pregnancy: Modeling the potential impact on the prevalences of spina bifida and cleft palate in the United States
Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2011;157(3):234-46.
Gilboa SM, Broussard CS, Devine OJ, Duwe KN, Flak AL, Boulet SL, Moore CA, Werler MM, Honein MA.
[Read summary]

Congenital heart defects and major structural noncardiac anomalies, Atlanta, Georgia, 1968 to 2005
J Pediatr. 2011;159(1):70-78.e2.
Miller A, Riehle-Colarusso T, Alverson CJ, Frías JL, Correa A.
[Read summary]

Medication use during pregnancy, with particular focus on prescription drugs: 1976-2008
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2011;205(1):51.e1-8.
Mitchell AA, Gilboa SM, Werler MM, Kelley KE, Louik C, Hernández-Díaz S; National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Associations between maternal fever and influenza and congenital heart defects
J Pediatr. 2011;158(6):990-5.
Oster ME, Riehle-Colarusso T, Alverson CJ, & Correa A.
[Read summary]

Preparing for influenza after 2009 H1N1: special considerations for pregnant women and newborns
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2011;204(6 Suppl 1):S13-20.
Rasmussen SA, Kissin DM, Yeung LF, Macfarlane K, Chu SY, Turcios-Ruiz RM, Mitchell EW, Williams J, Fry AM, Hageman J, Uyeki TM, Jamieson DJ; Pandemic Influenza and Pregnancy Working Group.
[Read summary]

Stillbirths: the way forward in high-income countries
Lancet. 2011;377(9778):1703-17.
Flenady V, Middleton P, Smith GC, Duke W, Erwich JJ, Khong TY, Neilson J, Ezzati M, Koopmans L, Ellwood D, Fretts R, Frøen JF; for The Lancet's Stillbirths Series steering committee.
[Read summary]

Maternal treatment with opioid analgesics and risk for birth defects
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2011;204(4): 314.e1-e11.
Broussard CS, Rasmussen SA, Reefhuis J, Friedman JM, Jann MW, Riehle-Colarusso T, Honein MA; National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Sensitivity of birth certificate reports of birth defects in Atlanta, 1995–2005: effects of maternal, infant, and hospital characteristics
Public Health Rep. 2011;126 (2):186-194
Boulet SL, Shin M, Kirby RS, Goodman D, Correa A.
[Read summary]

Maternal smoking and congenital heart defects in the Baltimore-Washington Infant Study
Pediatrics. 2011;127(3):e647-53.
Alverson CJ, Strickland MJ, Gilboa SM, & Correa A.
[Read summary]

Patterns of antidepressant medication use among pregnant women in a US population
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2011;51(2):264-70
Alwan S, Reefhuis J, Rasmussen SA, Friedman JM, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Use of clomiphene citrate and birth defects, National Birth Defects Prevention Study, 1997–2005
Hum Reprod. 2011 Feb;26(2):451-7
Reefhuis J, Honein MA, Schieve LA, Rasmussen SA, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Updated national birth prevalence estimates for selected birth defects in the United States, 2004-2006
Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2010 Dec;88(12):1008-16
Parker SE, Mai CT, Canfield MA, Rickard R, Wang Y, Meyer RE, Anderson P, Mason CA, Collins JS, Kirby RS, Correa A; for the National Birth Defects Prevention Network.
[Read summary] [Key Findings]

Maternal use of bupropion and risk for congenital heart defects
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2010; 203(1):52.e1-6.
Alwan S, Reefhuis J, Botto LD, Rasmussen SA, Correa A, Friedman JM, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read summary]

Prevalence of children and adolescents with spina bifida in 10 regions of the United States
Pediatrics; 2010; 124:1565-1571.
Shin M, Besser LM, Siffel C, Kucik, JE, Shaw GM, Lu C, Correa A and the CAMPS collaborative
[Read summary]

Pandemic 2009 Influenza A(H1N1) virus illness among pregnant women in the United States
JAMA; 2010; 303(15):1517-25.
Siston AM, Rasmussen SA, Honein MA, Fry AM, Seib K, Callaghan WM, Louie J, Doyle TJ, Crockett M, Lynfield R, Moore Z, Wiedeman C, Anand M, Tabony L, Nielsen CF, Waller K, Page S, Thompson JM, Avery C, Springs CB, Jones T, Williams JL, Newsome K, Finelli L, Jamieson DJ; Pandemic H1N1 Influenza in Pregnancy Working Group
[Read summary]

Racial differences by gestational age in neonatal deaths attributable to congenital heart defects — United States, 2003–2006
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). 2010;59(37):1208-1211
[Read article]

Mortality resulting from congenital heart disease among children and adults in the United States, 1999-2006.
Circulation. 2010 Nov 30;122(22):2254-63.
Gilboa SM, Salemi JL, Nembhard WN, Fixler DE, and Correa A.
[Read summary]

Folic acid intake among U.S. women aged 15-44 years, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2003-2006
Am J Prev Med. 2010; 38(5):534-542
Tinker SC, Cogswell ME, Devine O, Berry RJ.
[Read summary]

Association Between Prepregnancy Body Mass Index and Congenital Heart Defects
American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2010; 202(1):51.e1-51.e10.
Gilboa SM, Correa A, Botto LD, Rasmussen SA, Waller DK, Hobbs CA, Cleves MA, Riehle-Colarusso TJ, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.
[Read article]

All Articles

Search a database of articles that have been published by CDC authors within the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities from 1990 to present.