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Women who are problem drinkers often have psychiatric co-morbidities or epilepsy, for which valproic acid may be prescribed. It is critical to acknowledge that some medications may add teratogenic risk to the one induced by ethanol. Valproic acid is one such example. There is inconsistency in the literature concerning prevalence of fetal neural tube defects following maternal valproic acid (VPA) use. Various prevalence rates, ranging from 1% up to 5-6%, have been quoted in the literature. A meta-analysis is required to establish the exact prevalence.
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