How To Prevent Neural Tube Defects In Pregnant Women Should Be Noted

Fetal neural tube defects are defects that occur when the fetus's brain and spine develop abnormally. The incidence of neural tube defects is high in low-income countries, including Vietnam.
What are neural tube defects in the fetus?
The fetal neural tube is the core foundation for developing a complete nervous system later on, including the brain, skull, spinal cord and spine. The neural tube develops very early, in the 3rd week of pregnancy. Starting on the 18th day of pregnancy, the neural tube will gradually close, until the 28th day of pregnancy the neural tube will be completely closed.
And if this phenomenon does not occur at this time, the neural tube will not close and cause neural tube defects leading to fetal brain and spine defects in the development of after.
The most common types of neural tube defects in an unborn baby
Spina bifida (spina bifida)
Spinal fractures occur when the part of the neural tube that forms the spinal cord and the spinal cord is not closed properly, causing damage to the internal spinal cord.
Children with this malformation often lead to complications such as:
- Paralysis of the lower body difficult to move, or even inactive
- Difficult urination
- Having problems with increased pressure in the skull or hydrocephalus
- Severe spina bifida may lead to death
Spina bifida
Cerebral fetus - Conscious pregnancy
This is the most serious neural tube malformation, the brain is severely deformed and the skull is not present

In the case of a brainless fetus will die still from the womb or die soon after birth.


How To Prevent Neural Tube Defects In Pregnant Women Should Be Noted


Conception brainless
Hernia, meninges
This type of malformation accounts for about 10% of the neural tube defects. Brain herniation occurs when a partial defect in the skull (usually in the occipital area) results in a fluid or cerebral hernia that exposes the skull and is only covered by skin.
A fetus with a brain hernia has a neonatal mortality rate of about 40%, 80% can live if treated properly but will have severe mental and mental disabilities.
Causes of neural tube defects in fetus
Folic acid deficiency
The neural tube should be provided with a sufficient amount of folic acid, which is sufficient for complete development, ie complete closure. If the mother's body does not have enough Folic Acid to supply the fetus, the neural tube will not close, and will cause malformations with manifestations: cleft palate, cleft palate, heart defects, paralysis extremities, hydrocephalus, spina bifida ..
, even death.


How To Prevent Neural Tube Defects In Pregnant Women Should Be Noted


Medical studies have proven that a mother's body is deficient in Folic Acid at the time of conception, which increases the risk of neural tube defects in the fetus.
Because the neural tube developed very early, at that time, the mother herself did not know she was pregnant. Women need to take adequate Folic Acid supplements right from the moment they are about to become pregnant, to ensure blood Folic Acid levels reach the necessary levels right at the time of conception.
Pregnant women can take folic acid supplements during pregnancy with foods
Chromosomal abnormalities
Problems with chromosomal abnormalities are also causes of neural tube defects.
Due to genes and environment
The risk of having a birth defect is higher among mothers who live in polluted environments or have unhealthy living errors during pregnancy such as smoking, frequent exposure to tobacco smoke, working in contact with heat height…
Due to pathology and use of drugs in the mother
Neural tube defects are more likely to occur in mothers with such conditions:
- Having ever had a baby with neural tube defects
- Mother has neural tube defects
- Mother with diabetes must depend on insulin, poor blood sugar control
- Mother has epilepsy and must be treated with valproic or carbamazepine.
Methods to detect neural tube defects in the fetus
Test
By the time the pregnancy is 16 weeks, pregnant women should perform a test of the concentration of AFP in the mother's blood, thereby assessing the risk of malformations of the neural tube or abdominal wall in the fetus.
At 16 weeks of pregnancy, the fetus-produced AFP enters the mother's bloodstream, and all women normally have some AFP in their blood.
If the test results show that more AFP from the fetus enters the mother's bloodstream, the fetus is likely to have an open defect of the neural tube or abdominal wall.


How To Prevent Neural Tube Defects In Pregnant Women Should Be Noted


If the test results show that an increase in AFP levels will mean an increased risk of the fetus has an open defect of the neural tube or abdominal wall.
Supersonic
The first time ultrasound will be performed at 8 to 14 weeks, ultrasound to identify whether the fetal spinal problems are related to spinal fractures or to spinal deformities.
Ultrasound and routine testing are a way to detect unborn babies
How to prevent neural tube defects in pregnant women should know
Complement the content of folic acid
Folic acid supplementation before and during pregnancy is considered to be the most effective prevention of neural tube defects.
Depending on the condition of each person, the appropriate amount of folic acid should be added.

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