J Med Assoc Thai 2001; 84 (4):483

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Neural Tube Defects : A Different Pattern in Northern Thai Population
Kitisomprayoonkul N Mail, Tongsong T

The objective of this descriptive study was to describe the demographic and sonographic
patterns of fetal neural tube defects (NTDs) in Thai pregnant women. The study was conducted
at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital, Chiang Mai University. The subjects included all preg-
nancies with diagnosis of fetal neural tube defects. Basic clinical data of the subjects was
prospectively collected at the time of diagnosis for NTDs and followed-up until delivery. Antenatal
diagnosis was based on sonographic criteria. The results showed that the incidence of NTDs
was 0.6611,000 births, however, spina bifida was very rare, found in only 0.06/1,000 births,
similar to encephalocele. All anencephalic fetuses had no concurrent spina bifida, and only a
few cases had other associated anomalies. Ultrasound was able to diagnose NTDs with very
high accuracy. All cases of antenatal diagnosis were electively terminated. In conclusion, NTDs
in the Thai population were rather rare when compared to that of the Europeans and spina bifida
was extremely rare. The accuracy of antenatal diagnosis of NTDs with ultrasound was highly
reliable.
Key word
: Neural Tube Defect, Ultrasound, Antenatal Diagnosis

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