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Premarital genetic counselling A new law in the kingdom of bahrain

 
 

Date   :  09-03-2011

Visits  : 55  
 

Attachments : لا يوجد

Descripiton :

 
 

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SOURCE :

Journal of Health, Social and Environmental Issues (2005) Vol 6, No 2


Abstract

 

Genetic diseases, especially hereditary blood disorders

such as sickle-cell disease and thalassaemia syndromes

impose a significant burden on many countries. Their

chronic nature with little or no prospect of cure makes

them one of the leading causes of morbidity and

mortality.

In Bahrain 1-2% of newborns have sickle-cell disease

while 11% are carriers, and 2% are carriers of betathalassaemia.

In an attempt to reduce the incidence of

genetic diseases in the Kingdom of Bahrain a premarital

screening programme was introduced in 1985, which

included a national campaign to increase the awareness

of genetic blood diseases among the population. In 1992

the premarital counselling service was expanded to

include all health centres and more recently a law has

been issued mandating premarital screening and

counselling for all individuals wishing to get married.

The development of this law included wide consultation

with all stakeholders to ensure that socio-cultural mores,

theological issues and aspects of human rights had been

exhaustively considered.

The benefits and effects of this premarital counselling

programme will be seen in the improved genetic health of

present and future generations.

Keywords

 

Genetic counselling, premarital counselling, genetic

diseases

Introduction

 

Premarital counselling is a vitally important public

health measure for many nations around the world. Its

operational concepts were developed under the auspices

of the World Health Organization (WHO). Data available

from the WHO indicates that 240 million people world

wide are heterozygous for genetic disorders and at least

200,000 lethally affected homozygotes are born

annually, with a major proportion of these accounting for

sickle-cell anaemia and thalassaemia syndromes (WHO

1982).

In an attempt to reduce the incidence of genetic diseases

in Bahrain a premarital screening service was introduced

at the Ministry of Health in 1985. This was expanded in

1992 and premarital counselling was subsequently

included as a part of the primary health care services in

all health centres throughout the Kingdom of Bahrain.

More recently a law (Government Gazette: Issue 2640,

23rd June 2004) has been passed by the Bahrain

Government which requires that all Bahraini couples,

who are planning to marry, undergo mandatory

premarital counselling.

Consanguineous marriage and

genetic diseases

 

The word consanguineous is derived from the Latin con

sanguinis, "of common blood" and consanguineous

"of common blood" and consanguineous

"of common blood" and consanguineous

"of common blood" and consanguineous

kinship is characterized by the sharing of common

ancestors. Two or more individuals are said to be

consanguineous if they have a common recent ancestor

(Bodmer and Cavalli-Sforza, 1976) and a consanguineous

marriage is typically defined as occurring between a

couple related as second cousins or even closer.

Worldwide figures have illustrated that there is a 4-5%

increase in the risk of premature mortality among

offspring of the union of first cousins (Modell and Darr,

2002). Consanguineous marriages are a significant

factor in the propagation of genetic diseases, in Bahrain

the rate of consanguineous marriage has decreased quite

markedly from 39.4% (Al-Arrayed, 1999) to 20% (Al-

Arrayed in press) but this is still substantially lower than

in some neighbouring Arab countries. In Saudi Arabia

where cultural reasons support a strong preference for

consanguineous marriage the average rate is 58% with a

range of 34-80% (El-Hazmi et al. 2005), and similarly in

Jordan where the frequency of consanguineous marriage

ranges from 50-66 % (El-Shanti, 2001).

Consanguineous marriage poses a significantly greater

risk in that both parents will carry the same recessive

allele for an inherited trait with the likelihood their

offspring will be homozygous for that trait which will

Premarital genetic counselling: A new law in the

Kingdom of Bahrain

Shaikha Salim Al-Arrayed,

Amani Ali Al-Hajeri,

 

M.B.ch.B, DHCG-PhD, Head of Genetic Department, Salmaniya Medical

Complex, Kingdom of Bahrain

MD, RCSI in Family Medicine, Chief Resident, Assistant Editor-Bahrain

Medical Bulletin, Genetic Department, Salmaniya Medical Complex,

Kingdom of Bahrain

 

M.B.ch.B, DHCG-PhD, Head of Genetic Department, Salmaniya Medical

Complex, Kingdom of Bahrain

MD, RCSI in Family Medicine, Chief Resident, Assistant Editor-Bahrain

Medical Bulletin, Genetic Department, Salmaniya Medical Complex,

Kingdom of Bahrain

 

 
     
 

Archive

Title Date Visits

 Levels of pain control

28-09-2011 210

 Public Awareness of Glucose-6- Phosphate Dehydrogenase ( G6PD) Dificiency

11-08-2011 214

 fact about alpha thalassemia

10-08-2011 231

 Prevalence of Abnormal Hemoglobins among Students in Bahrain: A Ten-Year Study

09-03-2011 60

 Beta Thalassemia Frequency in Bahrain: A Ten Year Study

27-09-2010 58

 Public awareness of sickle cell disease in Bahrain

23-09-2010 50

 Premarital genetic counselling A new law in the kingdom of bahrain

23-09-2010 49

 links of several reserch published on Bahrain Medical Bulletin Journal

31-08-2010 52

 The risks and benefits of long-term use of hydroxyurea in sickle cell anemia: A 17.5 year follow-up.

22-06-2010 50

 Frequency of G6PD Deficiency among Bahraini students: A Ten Years Study

01-03-2010 48

الصفحات :1-2-3

الارشيف

العنوان التاريخ الزيارات
 

Public Awareness of Beta Thalassemia in Bahrain

05-04-2012 52
 

THE CHANGING PROFILE OF CONSANGUINITY

01-02-2012 52
 

Levels of pain control

28-09-2011 50
 

The Campaign to control genetic blood diseases in Bahrain.

09-03-2011 58
 

Prevalence of Abnormal Hemoglobins among Students in Bahrain: A Ten-Year Study

09-03-2011 50
 

Beta Thalassemia Frequency in Bahrain: A Ten Year Study

27-09-2010 50
 

Premarital genetic counselling A new law in the kingdom of bahrain

09-03-2011 55
 

Public awareness of sickle cell disease in bahrain

09-03-2011 82
 

روابط لأبحاث مختلفة من مجلة البحرين الطبية

07-07-2010 53
 

Frequency of G6PD Deficiency among Bahraini students: A Ten Years Study

07-07-2010 50

الصفحات :1-2-3-4