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What is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome? Web sleuths suspect missing Athena Brownfield, 4, had rare condition

The search for the missing girl, Athena Brownfield, is now being considered a recovery operation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation
UPDATED JAN 17, 2023
Athena Brownfield has been missing since January 10 (YouTube/KOCO 5 News)
Athena Brownfield has been missing since January 10 (YouTube/KOCO 5 News)

This article is not meant to be advisory, purely informative. Please consult a certified medical professional should you experience any discomfort or other symptoms.

CYRIL, OKLAHOMA: Athena Brownfield, a four-year-old child has been missing since Tuesday, January 10. She was reported missing around 2 pm from the 200 block of West Nebraska in Cyril. Meanwhile, the search for the child is now being considered a recovery operation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation. 

Internet is now discussing the possibility of Athena suffering from fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). Further, Ivon Adams, 36, and Alysa Adams, 31 were taken into custody on Thursday, January 12. Ivon is charged with one count of murder in the first degree and one count of child neglect where as Alysa is facing two counts of child neglect. 


Alysa Adams: Babysitter arrested after Athena Brownfield, 4, goes missing and sister, 5, found wandering alone

Who is Ivon Adams? Man charged with the murder of missing 4-year-old Athena Brownfield

Athena Brownfield has blonde hair and was last seen wearing a butterfly hoodie (YouTube/KOCO 5 News)
Athena Brownfield is a 4-year-old child who has been missing since January 10  (YouTube/KOCO 5 News)

What is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?

According to Mayo Clinic, "Fetal alcohol syndrome is a condition in a child that results from alcohol exposure during the mother's pregnancy. Fetal alcohol syndrome causes brain damage and growth problems. The problems caused by fetal alcohol syndrome vary from child to child, but defects caused by fetal alcohol syndrome are not reversible." According to the outlet, some of the symptoms include, "Distinctive facial features, including small eyes, an exceptionally thin upper lip, a short, upturned nose, and a smooth skin surface between the nose and upper lip, deformities of joints, limbs, and fingers, slow physical growth before and after birth, vision difficulties or hearing problems, small head circumference and brain size, heart defects and problems with kidneys and bones."

There are other brain and central nervous system problems noted in the outlet, "Poor coordination or balance, intellectual disability, learning disorders and delayed development, poor memory, trouble with attention and with processing information, difficulty with reasoning and problem-solving, difficulty identifying consequences of choices, poor judgment skills, jitteriness or hyperactivity, rapidly changing moods." There are social and behavioral issues that children with FAS will face during their lifetime, they are, "Difficulty in school, trouble getting along with others, poor social skills, trouble adapting to change or switching from one task to another, problems with behavior and impulse control, poor concept of time, problems staying on task, difficulty planning or working toward a goal," as per Mayo Clinic. 

'Trash parents. Trash guardians'

Some Reddit users are discussing if Athena had FAS. A user said, "That poor baby looks like she has FAS. Wide set eyes. Flat nose bridge. Flat upper lip. Trash parents. Trash guardians." To which another responded, "I was about to comment this too. This poor child was set up for failure even before she was born :(" Another added, "I was worried my comment wouldn’t be received well. I have had (do have) FAS kids in my (low socio) classroom for the past 20 years. It’s so hard not to be angry on their behalf for having to start life already behind, in a way that is difficult to overcome, without extra care and resources. And I have never had one come to me properly diagnosed with FAS."




A user claimed, "It is so hard for children to be diagnosed with FAS, at least in my state. A close friend adopted twins that clearly have it but would need to travel far to visit the only physicians that will evaluate and diagnose it here (there may also be an insurance barrier to them getting the diagnosis closer, but I don’t think so). She just decided not to pursue it since they still get services due to their other diagnoses." "You are pretty much guaranteed to see a pregnant woman drinking a beer and/or smoking a cigarette any time of day you visit the Oklahoma State Fair. I've live in Oklahoma and have met some wonderful people here, but progressives definitely swim against the tide," claimed a user. Another wrote, "Those who force births should have to hold newborns screaming in pain from drug withdrawals." 







This article contains remarks made on the Internet by individual people and organizations. MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and does not support claims or opinions being made online.