OverviewStudies show that an increase in the mother's dietary folic acid before conception and during the first month of pregnancy reduces the risk of having a child with a neural tube defect. The recommendation is that women of childbearing years take a daily folic acid supplement.
Review Date 5/10/2017
Updated by: Anita Sit, MD, Department of OB/GYN, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, San Jose, CA (for identification purposes only). Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.