Spina Bifida Based Medical Malpractice Lawsuits May Increase as Folate Levels Decrease
In 1998, a campaign was started to boost young women's intake of a B vitamin called folate. It is believed that this has saved an estimated 1,000 (32 percent) American babies from early death or lifelong disability. Furthermore, it is believed that if all women who may become pregnant took in 400 micrograms daily of folic acid, the incidence of spina bifida in the United States could be reduced by 70 percent. Lately, the drive to prevent neural-tube defects such as spina bifida in newborns has stalled.
In a report issued on Jan. 5, 2007 the CDC found that women in their childbearing years, blood folate levels had declined 16 percent by 2004 from the levels recorded in 2000.
I tend to believe that the decrease in vitamin B may be do to new diet trends such as eating fewer carbs and more protein.
This being the case I believe now it is more important then ever for a doctor prescribe prenatal vitamins to women of child bearing age and/or women expecting to get pregnant. At the very least, the physician should prescribe prenatal vitamins as soon as the doctor knows of the pregnancy.