Superdrug recalls orange-flavored pregnancy vitamins because they do not contain enough folic acid to prevent spinal defects.
- The main street chain decided to retrieve its own products and offer refunds
- It said that the levels of folic acid in the vitamins do not meet the NHS guidelines
- They contain the legal minimum – only half as much as the NHS recommends
- Pregnant women must take 400 mcg of folic acid per day to prevent spina bifida
Superdrug has recalled one of its own branded vitamins because it does not contain enough of one of the most vital nutrients.
The gummy orange flavor mushrooms contain only half as much folic acid as the NHS recommends for expectant mothers.
Superdrug had been selling the vitamins for five months and, despite reassuring women that they are safe, it said they had to be sent back for a refund.
A lack of folic acid during pregnancy increases the baby's risk of developing spinal problems such as spina bifida, which can cause lifelong disability.
Superdrug & # 39; s own brand Gummies Pregnancy Vitamins Orange flavor (photo) is recalled by the store because they do not meet the NHS guidelines on how much folic acid pregnant women should take
In a recall message on its website, Superdrug said: & # 39; Customers are advised to stop using this product and send it back to a Superdrug store where they will receive a full refund. No other Superdrug pregnancy care vitamins are affected. & # 39;
The reason for the recall is that the daily vitamins contain 200 mcg of folic acid, while the NHS recommends that pregnant women take 400 mcg per day.
The supplement is in compliance with EU and UK regulations, which require a minimum of 200 mcg.
WHAT ARE NEURAL PIPE FAULTS?
Neural tube defects are malformations of a person's brain, spine, or spinal cord that occur in the very early stages of pregnancy.
They occur when the fetus does not develop well, usually during the first four weeks after conception.
The most common forms of NTD are disorders called anencephaly, spina bifida and encephalocele.
Anencephaly is when a fetus does not develop its entire brain or skull – almost all babies born with it die shortly thereafter.
Spina bifida, a spinal cord malformation, is less often fatal and many children survive well into adulthood, but it can cause severe disabilities.
Encephalocele occurs when part of a baby's brain and membranes protrude through a hole in the skull. This can be treated with surgery, but is likely to cause long-term brain problems.
Women are advised to take up to 400 microns of folic acid per day during and before pregnancy for at least the 12th week after conception, as it has been proven to reduce the risk of neural tube defects.
But Superdrug added & # 39; acknowledges that NHS guidance goes beyond the legal requirement & # 39 ;.
The health service says that expectant mothers should take a 400mcg folic acid supplement every day while trying to conceive and during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.
It has been found that folic acid considerably reduces the chance that a baby develops neural tube defects, of which spina bifida is the best known.
This prevents the spine from developing properly and may potentially cause nerve damage.
Around 300,000 babies & nbsp; with neural tube defects are born worldwide every year, and about 700 with severe spina bifida are born every year in the UK, figures show.
Dr. Sarah Jarvis, a doctor, told me The sun: & # 39; If you use a lower dose than the recommended 400 micrograms per day, your baby may be at a higher risk of spinal cord problems. & # 39;
Folic acid, a type B vitamin, can be produced by the body if people eat foods rich in folic acid.
Folate-rich foods include vegetables – especially dark green leaves, fruits, nuts, beans, eggs, meat, poultry, grains, dairy, and seafood.
The government is drafting rules that ensure that folic acid is added to flour.
This would mean that it is present in all doughy foods such as bread, cake and pizza, and people are less likely to have small amounts of them in their bodies.
But even if women eat healthy, they may have difficulty getting enough folic acid while they are pregnant, so supplements are important.
Some women may have taken higher doses if they have certain diseases, but most mothers can stop taking the supplements after three months, by which time the baby's spine has already formed.
A spokesperson for Superdrug added: “We strive to offer our customers the highest possible quality of our own brand products and are constantly pushing ourselves to continuously improve both our quality and the way we work.
& # 39; As a result of this incident, we will immediately review our procedures and make the necessary changes. & # 39;
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