Supplementations in pregnancy

See also PHA folic acid and vitamin D guidelines for healthcare professionals
ChoiceDrugDosage
Folic acid for prevention of neural tube defects
for all women who could become pregnant

Folic acid 400 microgram tablets

Advise to purchase OTC

Dose: Women at low risk of neural tube defects, 400micrograms daily until week 12 of pregnancy
high risk neural tube defectsFolic acid 5mg tabletsDose: Women at high risk of neural tube defects, 5mg daily until week 12 of pregnancy
Vitamin D

Encourage ALL pregnant women to take 10micrograms of Vitamin D throughout pregnancy and whilst breastfeeding

Advise to purchase OTC

See section 9.6.4 Vitamin D

Prescribing Notes

Folic acid supplements taken before and during pregnancy can reduce the occurrence of neural tube defects. The risk of a neural tube defect occurring in a child should be assessed and folic acid given as follows:

  • Women at a low risk of conceiving a child with a neural tube defect should be advised to take folic acid as a medicinal or food supplement at a dose of 400 micrograms daily before conception and until week 12 of pregnancy (purchase over the counter). Women who have not been taking folic acid and who suspect they are pregnant should start at once and continue until week 12 of pregnancy.
  • Women at high risk of neural tube defects who wish to become pregnant (or who are at risk of becoming pregnant) should be advised to take folic acid 5mg daily and continue until week 12 of pregnancy. Women with sickle-cell disease should continue taking their normal dose of folic acid 5mg daily (or to increase the dose to 5mg daily) and continue this throughout pregnancy.