Editorial ↵

Pre-pregnancy counseling: Fetal medicine before the fetus arrives!

Pre-pregnancy counseling is vital to ensure that couples embark on the ‘pregnancy  journey’ in good health and equipped with up to date information.

This is particularly important for couples in a consanguineous marriage, with a family history of any genetic problem, who have had a pregnancy loss or a previous child with structural abnormality/ a genetic condition. The maternal history of diabetes mellitus, SLE, β- thalassemia, hypo-or hyperthyroidism, CMV infection, etc is also very important in assessing the risk to the future pregnancy. Increasingly, well educated young adults will look for their ‘perfect mate’ depending on their blood group, genetic history, etc apart from the other considerations!

It is vital to start Pre-pregnancy Vitamins, especially Folic acid three months prior to conceiving. If you are married and may be considering starting a family, it is a good idea to be on some vitamin supplements in general, so that you do not find yourself pregnant without the chance to have prepared yourself.

Folic acid is a vitamin that prevents birth defects, specifically, Spina Bifida or Neural tube defects. Prevention of this defect is extremely important as it can leave the child with considerable physical disability. Women taking anti-epileptic medications, or are diabetic, or have previously had a baby affected with Spina bifida are at an increased risk to develop this problem. The normal dose of folic acid needed to prevent spina bifida is 400 micrograms, but in the high risk group of women, 5 milligrams is the recommended dose.

Do visit an Ob-Gyn who can advise you regarding all aspects of pre-pregnancy care and visit our Pre-pregnancy Page: Click Here