An Audit of Neural Tube Defects in the Republic Of Ireland for 2012-2015.
Neural tube defects (NTD) are potentially preventable in two-thirds of cases by periconceptional maternal Folic Acid (FA) supplementation. A national audit for the years 2009-11 showed no decline in NTD rates over twenty years. The aim of this national audit was to determine trends/rates and inform revision of national FA supplementation and food fortification strategies. Of 274,732 live and stillbirths there were 121(42.0%) cases of anencephaly, 136(47.2%) cases of spina bifida and 31(10.8%) cases of encephalocoele giving a total of 288 and overall rate of 1.05/1000 compared with 1.04/1000 in 2009-11(NS). In the 184 women where the information was available, only 29.9%(n=55) reported starting FA before pregnancy. The number of cases diagnosed antenatally was 91%(n=262) and 53%(n=154) were live-born. This audit confirms that over a generation, healthcare interventions have not succeeded in decreasing the number of pregnancies in Ireland complicated by NTD, and that revised strategies need to be developed and implemented.
CommentsThe original article is available at www.imj.ie
Published CitationMcDonnell R, Delany V, O’Mahony MT, Lynch C, McKeating A, Monteith C, Turner MJ. An Audit of Neural Tube Defects in the Republic Of Ireland for 2012-2015. Irish Medical Journal. 2018;111(3)712.
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology