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Stressing - spina bifida risk?

(11 Posts)
LadySnapcase Sat 02-Mar-13 21:19:48

Hi all. Am getting myself a bit stressed! I was chatting to my mum the other day and she asked if I'd mentioned to the midwife that my dad has spina bifida occulta. Honestly, I had completely forgotten that he has it! It's really mild and he has no symptoms (apart from a bit of a hairy back!) but am now worrying whether this could mean my baby is at risk of the more serious form. Does anyone with a bit of science knowledge know? Also wishing I'd mentioned it earlier (I'm 14 weeks nearly) as it looks like they might recommend a higher dose of folic acid. It completely slipped my mind and now I feel terrible sad They didn't notice anything odd at my 12 week scan, but don't know if it would have been too early anyway...can anyone reassure me I'm overreacting?

Fairy130389 Sat 02-Mar-13 21:56:00

Firstly, don't panic.
There is nothing you can do about it now and stressing won't achieve anything. Don't forget that folic acid comes from food etc too as well as the usual folic acid supplement.

I'm sure all will be fine but they will check properly at the 20 week scan and then if you need to you can plan as you need to for a baby with extra needs.

Don't forget that 95% of spina bif occurs in people without family history.

It is still very, very rare.

Sorry I can't be more helpful but didn't want to read and run.

curmit Sat 02-Mar-13 22:01:26

Spina Bifida Occulta is probably really common, people don't even know they have it it's so mild, they only ever find out they have it through getting an xray for another problem. You could even have it yourself, but have had no reason for xray and it doesn't cause you a problem ergo, it isn't a problem. DON'T stress about it. mention it at next midwife appointment, but they will probably tell you not to think anymore about it. x

PaulaPixie Sat 02-Mar-13 22:01:36

Your Dad's type of Spina Biffida is the mildest and most common (10 to 20% of the population) and rarely causes discomfort or disability, in fact some cases of Spina Biffida Occulta are so mild that they are never detected. Spina Biffida testing is done in the second trimester 16-18 weeks for the more severe forms. Try not to worry, keep taking the Folic Acid and let your midwife know x

LadySnapcase Sat 02-Mar-13 22:06:27

Thanks Fairy. I've managed to be pretty chilled about most things so far (except for a tiny bleed that had me in hysterics at 6 weeks blush) but for some reason the fact that I hadn't even thought about this just made me freak out! You're right, of course, just need to calm down...its been a stressful few weeks work-wise, and next week is going to be worse, so that's not helping either. That's reassuring about the family history thing, though.

Right, deep breaths...

LadySnapcase Sat 02-Mar-13 22:09:46

Hi curmit and Paula, thanks for the responses. Will definitely mention it to my midwife, don't know whether to ring them specifically (seems a bit excessive since there's nothing that can be done?) or just mention it at my 16 week appointment?

curmit Sat 02-Mar-13 22:13:24

Just mention at 16 weeks - seriously she will tell you not to worry about it. x

Quilty Sun 03-Mar-13 08:48:52

The causes of spina bifida are still not very well understood however the main thing we do know is that folic acid supplements have significantly reduced the incidence of SB. There is very little link with family history, if any so please try not to worry about it ( easier said than done!)
For further reassurance you could mention it to the sonographer at your 20 week scan and ensure they do a really thorough check of babies spine.

LadySnapcase Sun 03-Mar-13 10:48:46

Thanks everyone...have calmed down a bit now! Was taking the folic acid for a good 18 months whilst ttc so figure that should count for something anyway. Will mention it at the scan anyhow...

thefarmerhasawife Sun 03-Mar-13 14:30:15

Ladysnapcase - my husband has spina bifida occulta and all four of my children are absolutely fine. Whenever I've mentioned it at booking in appointments the midwives have just jotted it down in my green notes and some of them had never even heard of it. Please try not to worry and enjoy your pregnancy.

LadySnapcase Thu 07-Mar-13 11:03:06

Thanks farmer, that definitely helps, am glad to hear everything was ok with your children smile

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