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Comment & Response
July 2017

Folic Acid for the Prevention of Neural Tube Defects

Author Affiliations
  • 1Office for Research Promotion, Department of the Hospital Management, Verona University Hospital, Verona, Italy
  • 2Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Neonatology, IRCCS Fondazione Cà Granda, Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy
  • 3Department of Epidemiology, Lazio Region, Rome, Italy
JAMA Pediatr. 2017;171(7):709-710. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2017.0857

To the Editor The contents highlighted in the editorial of Mitchell1 are even more important in Europe where the absence of diversified intervention strategies, including food’s fortification, leaves a single tool for the widespread dissemination and implementation of the recommendations. Around the world, health authorities recommend to women of reproductive age the use of folic acid supplements before and early in pregnancy to reduce the risk of neural tube defects. At present, mandatory food fortification with folic acid has not yet been introduced in the European countries, and enhanced sources of folate are available only from folic acid supplements, voluntary fortification, and intake of foods rich in folates such as vegetables and fruits.

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