Consanguinity is a deeply rooted social trend among one-fifth of the world population. Around the globe consanguineous marriages (Commonly known as “Cousin Marriages”) is in practice by many societies from time immemorial. It is widely practiced in the Middle Eastern region.
While assessing the consequences between cousin marriages and the non-blood related marriages, several scientific studies have shown that consanguinity leads to high risk of genetic disorders in children of the couple.
People usually wonder why in consanguineous marriages, a child is usually diagnosed with the genetic disorder. It is because both parents commonly share around 50 percent of their genetic inheritance. In such cases, if both parents carry any such defected or recessive gene, then the chances of passing that genetic disorder to their offspring is as high as 25%. In a study by Igenomix 19.7% of consanguineous couples had a high risk of having a child with genetic disorders.
Genetic disorders pass on from generation to generation. However, you could be a carrier of a genetic disorder and still lead a healthy life. Doctors say that they often come across those patients who are suffering from Thalassemia minor and these patients generally get to know about being diagnosed with this disorder while being treated for some other problem later in their lives. In cases, if both the parents are carriers of the same mutation (disorder) there is a high probability that the child will be affected by that disorder causing severe symptoms in most cases.
The risk of transmission of Genetic Disorders is 2.5 times more in Middle Eastern countries, because of the Consanguineous Marriages.
Generally, parents who are carriers of serious genetic diseases realize it after giving birth to an affected child. Genetic diseases cannot be cured but it can be prevented. The Carrier Genetic Test (CGT) is the best way to begin while planning to start a family. It is a simple blood test which determines the risk of having an affected child with a genetic disorder. IGENOMIX’s CGT is a clinically validated genetic screening test based on Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) making it the most comprehensive and accurate test available. CGT also analyses more than 6,600 mutations corresponding to over 600 genetic disorders. With CGT, the probability of a newborn with genetic disorder decreases from 1:100 to 1:100,000.