Child Psychiatry & Human Development

, Volume 47, Issue 2, pp 335–346 | Cite as

Neurobehavioral Disorder Associated with Prenatal Alcohol Exposure (ND-PAE): Proposed DSM-5 Diagnosis

  • Julie A. KableEmail author
  • Mary J. O’Connor
  • Heather Carmichael Olson
  • Blair Paley
  • Sarah N. Mattson
  • Sally M. Anderson
  • Edward P. Riley
Substantive/Theoretical Review


Over the past 40 years, a significant body of animal and human research has documented the teratogenic effects of prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE). Neurobehavioral Disorder associated with PAE is proposed as a new clarifying term, intended to encompass the neurodevelopmental and mental health symptoms associated with PAE. Defining this disorder is a necessary step to adequately characterize these symptoms and allow clinical assessment not possible using existing physically-based diagnostic schemes. Without appropriate diagnostic guidelines, affected individuals are frequently misdiagnosed and treated inappropriately (often to their considerable detriment) by mental health, educational, and criminal justice systems. Three core areas of deficits identified from the available research, including neurocognitive, self-regulation, and adaptive functioning impairments, are discussed and information regarding associated features and disorders, prevalence, course, familial patterns, differential diagnosis, and treatment of the proposed disorder are also provided.


ND-PAE Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders Prenatal alcohol exposure Psychiatric diagnosis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and PediatricsEmory University School of MedicineAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLALos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesUniversity of Washington School of MedicineSeattleUSA
  4. 4.Department of Psychology, Center for Behavioral TeratologySan Diego State UniversitySan DiegoUSA
  5. 5.National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and AlcoholismBethesdaUSA

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