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PSA: Check if you should be taking 5mg of folic acid, please.

(13 Posts)
SharedLife Wed 04-May-16 19:53:43

I have just had an induced miscarriage at 13 weeks. It was seen on the 12 week scan last week that baby had acrania/anencephaly. I have a high BMI and was prescribed 5mg of folic acid at my 7 week midwife appointment. But by then the problem had already occurred. It is recommended that 5mg folic acid should be taken for 3 weeks before conception for people with:

A history of neural tube defects in their family (this applies to both the mother's and father's sides of the family)
Insulin-dependent diabetes
A previous pregnancy where neural tube defects were identified in their baby
Coeliac disease
A body mass index higher than 30
And also women taking anti-epilepsy medication.

I will be asking for 5mg of folic acid to be put on a repeat prescription from now on.

The higher dose wont mean that there is no chance of baby developing a neural tube defect but the chance is greatly reduced and at least you will feel you did everything you could. Unlike me right now.

AppleMagic Wed 04-May-16 19:59:23

I'm sorry for your loss and thank you for sharing the information flowers

My endocrinologist suggested I take 5mg folic acid when ttc as a pre-diabetic even though not insulin dependent, but like you I wasn't aware prior to that conception. It also ended in miscarriage (cause unknown) but I've been taking it ever since and now pregnant again.

Writerwannabe83 Wed 04-May-16 21:23:19

I'm on anti-epileptic drugs and was told to take 5mg tablets for three months before TTC.

I'm very sorry to hear of your loss flowers

everdene Wed 04-May-16 22:29:36

I'm also on 5mg folic acid as I'm epileptic.

SharedLife Thu 05-May-16 12:03:19

Its great to hear that people are being advised of this. I saw a number of doctors from GPs to consultants while TTC and no one told me about the higher dose. Perhaps its just with higher BMIs the info isn't as readily available.

Kwick709 Thu 05-May-16 22:16:08

sharedlife I am extremely sorry for you loss flowers I too just had a miscarriage at 8 weeks... Just devastating.
I always get confused with vitamin dosages - I take a pre-conception supplement which has 400 somethings in it and then I take an additional folic acid supplement of another 400 somethings... i wonder if I am overdosing...
I read somewhere about taking extra if overweight and when I suggested to my consultant she agreed that I up my dosage.

SharedLife Thu 05-May-16 22:28:41

Thank you, so sorry to hear about your loss, I hope you have some good support. flowers

You will be taking 800 micrograms, 5 mg is quite a lot more. I would ask the doctor to prescribe it for you as you would have to take a lot of 400microgram tablets to make 5mg.

AppleMagic Thu 05-May-16 22:30:11

I think you might be under-dosing Kwick. The 5mg recommended for high risk types is the equivalent of 5000 micrograms (somethings grin). It sounds like you are only taking 800.
My endocrinologist was happy for me to take my 5mg tablet along with my regular prenatal so basically having 5400micrograms per day.

I've never managed to find 5mg tablets in the shops, have had to get them on prescription but they might be available online.

AppleMagic Thu 05-May-16 22:31:03

X-post it took me so long to get my post to make sense (I hope) grin

Kwick709 Thu 05-May-16 22:35:47

Thank you apple and shared - you see this vitamin thingy is not my forte!!!! Also I have just seen there is a debate about folate vs folic so will look into this further... But not now - I am zonked!

Kwick709 Fri 06-May-16 20:36:39

I have decided to ask my consultant to prescribe as online was a minefield. Best plan would be to lose shed loads of weight....

Chintaria Fri 06-May-16 21:34:16

So sorry for your loss Shared flowers I know how easy it is to blame yourself when you lose a baby, I beat myself up many times thinking it was something I did. Please don't be too hard on yourself sad
When ttc dd I was advised to take 5mg of folic acid after several miscarriages & a second trimester loss - two of the miscarriages were chromosomal so they said it was worth taking extra folic acid as it could only help. I used to take 11x400mcg each day, along with my pregnancy multivitamin which also had folic acid in it.
Thinking of you...

Kwick709 Sat 07-May-16 12:17:22

My God chintaria did you not rattle with so many pills taken?!

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