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With the prevalence of drug addiction amongst young women rising in the United Kingdom the problems associated with pregnancy in this group are increasingly being reported. An attempt has been made to determine whether the birth of a baby is a sufficient stimulus for the mother to cease her drug of addiction. Between the years 1966 and 1988, 86 such mothers gave birth at St Mary's Hospital, London, whom we were able to trace for at least one year after their last delivery. The results show that the majority of mothers continued with their drug use and where this is so the chances of the child remaining with her are markedly reduced. Discussion centres around possible ways of identifying those likely to succeed in drug withdrawal during pregnancy and the need for increasing and continued support for these mothers and their babies after they have left hospital.