Conference Proceedings

Neural Tube Defects in Australia: Trends in Encephaloceles and Other Neural Tube Defects Before and After Promotion of Folic Acid Supplementation and Voluntary Food Fortification

Carol Bower, Heather D'Antoine, Fiona J Stanley

BIRTH DEFECTS RESEARCH PART A-CLINICAL AND MOLECULAR TERATOLOGY | WILEY | Published : 2009

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Use of periconceptional folic acid supplementation has been promoted in Western Australia since late 1992, and voluntary fortification of some foods with folic acid has been permitted in Australia since 1996. Reduced rates of neural tube defects (NTDs) have been observed since 1995. Aboriginal infants have a higher rate of NTDs, but no fall in rates has been documented. Encephaloceles have not been examined separately. METHODS: Data on anencephaly, spina bifida, and encephalocele were obtained from the Western Australian Birth Defects Registry. The prevalence ratio for each type of NTD was calculated, comparing 1993 to 1995 (promotion of supplements, no fortification) and 1996 to..

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