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Researchers looked at 127 studies and found that 428 conditions co-occur with FASD. They can affect almost every system in the body, including:
FASD may not be detected at birth but sometimes becomes apparent later in life and carries lifelong implications. Its effects are diverse and range from cognitive and sensory processing issues and Attention Deficit Disorder to heart problems and concerns with bones and organs. Quite often people with FASD have multiple diagnoses. It’s critical though, that all professionals involved understand FASD is the overarching diagnosis. FASD, especially if unrecognised and unsupported, can contribute to serious social and behavioural problems.
It’s NOT about ‘the face’
Every person with FASD is affected differently. A common ‘old-school’ misconception persists that someone has to have specific facial features to have a diagnosis. This is incorrect. By some estimates, it is less than 10% of those on the FASD spectrum who have these distinctive facial features.
All too often, people with FASD are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.
The good news is that there are known strategies that can help someone with FASD to build upon their many strengths and to lead happy and fulfilling lives.