Clinico-epidemiologic features of oculocutaneous albinism in northeast section of Cairo – Egypt

  • AF Mohamed
  • NS El-Sayed
  • NS Seifeldin


Background: Oculocutaneous albinism (OCA) is a genetically heterogeneous group of disorders characterized by the absence or reduced pigmentation of the skin, hair and eyes. To assess the clinico-epidemiologic features of different forms of OCA among Egyptian patients, we performed a retrospective study to determine the frequency, types, clinical presentation and associated genomic errors in albino patients and their relatives consulting the Genetics Clinic, Pediatric Hospital, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt.
Methods: We used the outpatients index files to identify diagnosed cases of albinism referred from the dermatologic and ophthalmologic departments with different genodermatoses over 43 year period.
We used specifically designed data collection protocol forms to extract epidemiological and clinical data from the patients medical records. These were entered into a computer database and analyzed using standard statistical software.
Results: The occurrence rate of albinism in our study was 20.4% of genodermatoses patients and 1 per 5843 patients attending the Pediatric hospital. Consanguineous marriage was reported among parents of 66.37% of patients and positive family history was reported in 46.01% of patients. Complete OCA was detected in 48.59% of patients, partial albinism in 41.59% of patients and syndromic albinism was detected in 7.96%. Associated genomic errors were detected in 36.28% of our albino patients and seventy one multiple mutant genomic errors were defined among relatives of thirty seven index families of oculocutaneous albinism patients.
Conclusion: To the best of our knowledge, this preliminary study is the first report of its kind from Egypt. The high rate of parental consanguinity among the parents of our Egyptian albino patients may account for the frequency of this genodermatosis in Egypt.

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