• Sania Tanweer Khattak
  • Muhammad Khan
  • Tabassum Naheed
  • Imran ud Din Khattak
  • Muhammad Ismail


Background: Anencephaly is a fatal congenital abnormality characterised by absence of cerebralhemisphere and cranial vault. Overall incidence of anencephaly is 3.8–6.0/1,000 births. This studywas conducted to determine the prevalence, diagnosis and management of anencephaly in DistrictSwat. Methods: This Prospective study was carried out over a period of one year from January2007 to December 2007 at Saidu Teaching Hospital/Saidu Medical College Swat. Pregnantwomen having foetuses with neural tube defects (NTDs) admitted in Labour Room/ObstetricWard of the Saidu Teaching Hospital Swat were selected as subjects. Those women who deliverednormal babies were taken as control subjects. A proper history was taken from each subject and allthe relevant information were recorded on a proforma. Results: A total of 5,560 subjects wereincluded in this study. Out of them, 69 were having NTDs, 63 had anencephaly, 4 had spinabifida, and 2 foetuses were having multiple neural tube defects. Prevalence of anencephaly was11.33/1000 births and that of spina bifida was 0.72/1000 births. Eighty percent (80%) anencephalyand 50% spina bifida were diagnosed by ultrasonography. Most of the cases (52, 75.36%) weredelivered through normal vaginal delivery after induction. Twelve (17.40%) had spontaneousvaginal delivery, 4 (5.80%) had caesarean section, and hysterectomy was done in 1 (1.45%).Conclusion: Anencephaly is common congenital anomaly in Swat. Complications can beprevented by implementing screening program for early diagnosis, treatment, and management.Prevalence can be decreased by folic acid supplementation periconceptionally.Keywords: Anencephaly, Neural tube defects, prevalence, spina bifida


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