Gastroschisis is generally considered a sporadic occurrence meaning that the risk for future pregnancies is minimal (less than 1%). However, there are studies that suggest a some families carry a predisposition with a multifactorial-type of inheritance such that recurrence risks are between 4 and 5%. There is some recent evidence that suggest that taking 4-5mg of folic acid (Folate, and inexpensive vitamin) beginning at least three months prior to your next conception can decrease this risk. Finally, there have been families reported in which more than one child was affected by this anomaly, and in fact I have seen one family in which three consecutive pregnancies were affected by this disorder. These rare cases are felt to be due to a single gene abnormality, with recurrence risks of 25 - 50% depending on the type of gene defect present. Recommendations for future pregnancies would include early second trimester maternal serum screening and ultrasound.
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