Spina bifida is a neural tube defect caused by the failure of the fetus's spine to close properly during the first few week
of pregnancy. Research with humans and animals suggests a genetic basis for the defect. It is considered likely that spina
bifida results from the interaction of multiple genes and environmental factors.
Research has shown that lack of folic acid is a contributing factor in the pathogenesis of neural tube defects, including
spina bifida. Supplementation of the mother's diet with folic acid can reduce the overall incidence of neural tube defects
by about 70 percent.
Prevalence of Spina Bifida in Children Born to NJ Resident Mothers, Statewide Rates, 2000-2008
Birth Certificate Database, Office of Vital Statistics and Registry, New Jersey Department of Health;
Early Identification and Monitoring Program, Special Child Health and Early Intervention Services, Division of Family Health
Services, New Jersey Department of Health;
Number of children born with spina bifida per 10,000 live births to women residing in New Jersey in a specified time interval.
How We Calculated the Rates
Number of children born with spina bifida among live births to women residing in New Jersey in a specified time interval.
Count of all live births to women residing in New Jersey in a specified time interval.
Page Content Updated On 07/31/13,
Published on 08/05/13
Special Child Health and Early Intervention Services, New Jersey Department of Health, PO Box 364, Trenton, NJ 08625-0364; Phone (609) 292-5676; Fax (609) 633-7820; Web: http://www.state.nj.us/health/fhs/index.shtml
Department of Health
P. O. Box 360, Trenton, NJ 08625-0360
Phone: (609) 292-7837
Toll-free in NJ: 1-800-367-6543 Our Locations
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State Health Assessment Data Web site: http://nj.gov/health/shad".