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Preconception Folic Acid Supplement Use in Immigrant Women (1999–2016)
Open AccessArticle

Low Prevalence of Folic Acid Supplementation during Pregnancy: A Multicenter Study in Vietnam

School of Public Health, Curtin University, Perth WA 6845, Australia
Faculty of Public Health, Pham Ngoc Thach University of Medicine, Ho Chi Minh City 700000, Vietnam
Faculty of Public Health, Thai Nguyen University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Thai Nguyen 250000, Vietnam
National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Hanoi 100000, Vietnam
Faculty of Public Health, University of Medicine and Pharmacy at Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City 700000, Vietnam
Faculty of Public Health, Hai Phong University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Hai Phong 180000, Vietnam
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(10), 2347;
Received: 9 August 2019 / Revised: 19 September 2019 / Accepted: 20 September 2019 / Published: 2 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Prenatal Development and Nutrition Intake)
Periconceptional folic acid (FA) supplementation is recommended to prevent neural tube defects (NTDs), but little information is known about its use in Vietnam. It is important that FA supplements start to be taken when planning a pregnancy and continued through the first trimester to prevent NTDs, as the neural tube closes in the first month of pregnancy. However, FA supplementation in Vietnam is usually recommended to commence from the first antenatal visit, which is usually at 16 weeks, and very few women take FA before their first visit. This multicenter study aimed to determine the prevalence of FA supplement use and associated maternal characteristics in Vietnam. FA supplementation was assessed in 2030 singleton pregnant women between 2015 and 2016. In total, 654 (32.2%) women reported taking either supplements containing FA alone or multivitamins containing FA, and 505 (24.9%) reported correctly taking supplements containing FA alone. Women who were aged 30 years or over, had low education levels, had formal employment, and whose current pregnancy was first or unplanned were less likely to supplement with FA. Education programs are needed to encourage FA supplementation when contemplating pregnancy. View Full-Text
Keywords: folic acid; folate; pregnancy; dietary supplement; Vietnam folic acid; folate; pregnancy; dietary supplement; Vietnam
MDPI and ACS Style

Ha, A.V.V.; Zhao, Y.; Binns, C.W.; Pham, N.M.; Nguyen, C.L.; Nguyen, P.T.H.; Chu, T.K.; Lee, A.H. Low Prevalence of Folic Acid Supplementation during Pregnancy: A Multicenter Study in Vietnam. Nutrients 2019, 11, 2347.

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