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J Coll Physicians Surg Pak. 2012 Apr;22(4):218-21. doi: 04.2012/JCPSP.218221.

Awareness among parents of β-thalassemia major patients, regarding prenatal diagnosis and premarital screening.

Author information

1
Department of Paediatrics, Fatima Jinnah Medical College, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Lahore. fouziahasnain@hotmail.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the knowledge among parents of thalassemia major patients about prenatal diagnosis, premarital screening for carrier detection and impact of consanguineous marriage on disease transmission.

STUDY DESIGN:

Descriptive study.

PLACE AND DURATION OF STUDY:

The Thalassemia Centre, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Lahore, from July to September 2009.

METHODOLOGY:

One hundred and fifteen parents of β-thalassemia major patients were enrolled in this study. A questionnaire was developed and parents were interviewed to assess their knowledge about preventive measures against thalassemia major. Parents of patients with all other types of blood disorder were excluded from the study.

RESULTS:

There were 74 male (64.3%) and 41 female (35.7) patients with mean age of 9.5 ± 5.1 years. Eighty-eight patients (76.5%) were accompanied by mothers and the rest by their fathers. Seventy-four parents (32.1%) were illiterate; among the literates only 7 were highly educated (3%). Ninety-four couples (81.7%) had consanguineous marriage. Fiftytwo parents (44.6%) knew that thalassemia is an inherited disorder. Thirty-eight (33%) had heard about the test for detecting thalassemia carrier. Premarital screening and prenatal diagnosis was known to 97 (84.3%) and 88 (76.5%) parents respectively. Ninety-nine parents (86.1%) knew about the termination of pregnancy on positive prenatal test but only 69 considered it acceptable religiously (60%). Major source of information to the parents were doctors.

CONCLUSION:

Parental knowledge about thalassemia and its preventive measures was inadequate; this requires intervention in the form of public health education programs concentrating on high risk/targeted population.

PMID:
22482376
DOI:
04.2012/JCPSP.218221
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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