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Albinism : A Congenital Disorder Essay

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Albinism is a congenital disorder associated with partial or total lack of pigmentation of the skin. Scientifically, this is referred to as the Oculocutaneous albinism (OCA) (). This condition is genetically inherited, passed from parents with carrier genes or those already with the disorder to their off springs. OCA is subdivided into two categories, OCA1 and OCA 2. OCA 2 is the most prevalent type of albinism found in Africa.
People living with albinism are more susceptible to negative social constructions among the Africans as well as harmful effects of the ultraviolet exposure from the sun leading to major health issues. Besides the discrimination that this population lives with, they must live with other health issues such as visual problems, sun sensitivity and skin cancer. In parts of Africa, there are beliefs that the people with albinism are cursed or even cannibals. Others believe that their body parts are magical and they are hunted and body parts such as arms and genitals cut down, being left either alive or dead.
Prevalence data on albinism is available on Tanzania, South Africa, Malawi, Nigeria and Zimbabwe. Worldwide, the prevalence is 1 in every 5000 people but in these countries, it goes as high as 1 in every 1000 people. Africans are generally at a greater risk of albinism and the health and social challenges that are associated with the disorder. This paper studies these reported results discussing the albinos are haunted in Africa due to their skin
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