Changes in Attitudes towards Marriage and Reproduction among People with a Genetic Illness

A Study of Patients with Thalassemia in Iran

in Volume 12 (2017): Issue 2 (Dec 2017): Emerging Kinship in a Changing Middle East. Guest Editor: Soraya Tremayne

In this article, the change in attitude towards marriage and reproduction among Iranian people with a genetic illness called thalassemia has been investigated, along with an analysis of the impact brought by the national thalassemia prevention programmes, which were introduced to discourage marriage between carriers (thalassemia minor) and the birth of severe homozygous cases (thalassemia major). Marriage and reproductive choices of people with both thalassemia minor and thalassemia major were focused upon in order to prevent the birth of affected babies. Thalassemia carrier couples prefer to choose abortion of affected foetuses, rather than giving up their marriage, and some people with thalassemia major choose a person with thalassemia major as a marriage partner, though they must give up having their own child.