NZ Formulary

Folic acid

fol-ik ass-id

What does it do?

Folic acid is used to treat and prevent some types of anaemia. It is also used to reduce the risk of some birth defects and prevent side effects caused by methotrexate.

How should you take it?

Take folic acid regularly as directed.
Take the tablets with a glass of water.
Measure the liquid carefully with an oral syringe or measuring spoon.

What if you forget a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as possible. If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and carry on as normal. Do not take two doses at the same time.

Can you take other medicines?

Some medicines available without a prescription may react with folic acid including:

  • supplements that also contain folic acid (e.g. Centrum®)

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products or recreational drugs.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Changes in taste

Abdominal pain, nausea, farting

Tell your doctor if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • Tell your doctor if you have a blood disorder or anaemia.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.