Folic acid usage and awareness in pregnant women in Istanbul, Turkey

Nilgün Tekkeşin, Figen Taser


Intake of folic in the periconceptional period reduces the risk of neural tube defects (NTDs). The aim of this study was to assess the level of awareness regarding the use of folic acid in pregnacy. We assessed the consumption of folic acid during pregnancy among Turkish women presented to the hospital and analyzed the difference of folic acid supplementation between planned and unplanned pregnancies. Of the 1076 women, 677 (62.9%) reported current use of a prenatal folic acid at the time of the department visit, while 399 pregnant women (37.0%) identified themselves as non-users (p = 0.006). In the unplanned pregnancy group, 302 (65.22%) women reported taking folic acid during pregnancy, but 161 (34.77%) women began three months prior to conception as recommended by their gynecologists (p<0.0001).

Although, the study group was a significant user with a high awareness of folic acid, our findings may not be generalizable to other areas of the country. Because, parcitipants were likely to be one of the most educated group with a medium or high socio-economical status. Besides these hopeful results, we believe the necessity to re-evaluate our educational strategies and consider reduction of unplanned pregnancies as part of our goals.


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Journal of Hospital Administration

ISSN 1927-6990(Print)   ISSN 1927-7008(Online)

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