Parental employment status and neural-tube defects and folic acid/multivitamin supplementation in Hungary

Erika Medveczky, Erzsébet Puhó

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To study the role of parental employment status as indicator of socio-economic status (SES) in the origin of neural-tube defect (NTD) and in the use of periconceptional folic acid/multivitamin supplementation. Materials and methods: One thousand two hundred and two cases with neural-tube defects, 38,151 population controls without any defects and 22,475 patient controls with other defects were compared in the population-based data set of the Hungarian case-control surveillance of congenital abnormalities, 1980-1996. Results: The proportion of professionals was lower, while the proportion of semi- and unskilled workers was higher in the neural-tube defect group compared with the population control group. However, the comparison of neural-tube defect and patient control groups showed a lower socio-economic status in the patient control group. In addition, the socio-economic status of fathers in the neural-tube defect group seemed to be better than in the population and patient control groups. The higher periconceptional folic acid supplementation and the higher use of multivitamins during pregnancy occurred in the professional and managerial categories in all the three study groups. Conclusion: The occurrence of neural-tube defect shows a slight socio-economic dependence in the mothers at the comparison with population control group, however, patient control group had the lowest socio-economic status. The higher maternal education goes together with a higher proportion of periconceptional folic acid supplementation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-184
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 10 2004


  • Employment status of parents
  • Neural-tube defects
  • Periconceptional folic acid/multivitamin supplementation
  • Socio-economic status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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