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Awareness about Importance of Folic Acid during Pregnancy among Women in Child Bearing Age : A Community Pharmacy Study

Author(s): K. Abedulla Khan, K. Pavan Kumar, K. Anupama and K. Vanitha Prakash

Neural tube defects are among the most common birth defects that result in infant mortality and serious disability. Folic acid helps the body to make healthy new cells. When a woman has enough folic acid in her body before and during pregnancy, it can prevent major birth defects of brain and spinal cord specially, neural tube defects. There is an increase in folate requirement during pregnancy due to the growth of the foetus and uteroplacental organs. Aim of this study was to find out whether the women child bearing age were aware of the importance of taking folic acid before conception and during the pregnancy. Results of this study show that maximum numbers of women are not aware of the importance of folic acid in pregnancy; only 2 percent of women in age group between 30-34 years were aware about folic acid. Pharmacist has an important role in advocating folic acid message to gynaecologists and women in child bearing age. Increasing involvement of pharmacist in this area will help to raise the professional profile of the pharmacist as an expert for women to go for advice during pregnancy.

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